Robert Downey Jr.

Robert Downey Jr. Opens Up About Use of Blackface in ‘Tropic Thunder’

“It was impossible to not have it be an offensive nightmare of a movie, and 90 percent of my black friends were like, ‘Dude, that was great,'" the actor said.

Robert Downey Jr. opened up in a recent interview about his role in the satirical film "Tropic Thunder" and its use of blackface, according to NBC News.

Downey played a white actor who has undergone a skin-darkening procedure for the role of a black soldier in the spoof of the movie industry. Ben Stiller directed and also starred in the 2008 film about a group of actors shooting a big-budget war movie who are forced to become the soldiers they are portraying.

During a recent appearance on “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast, Downey described the skin-darkening makeup he wore as special-effects makeup and recalled his conversation with Stiller who had offered him the role.

"I thought, 'Yeah, I’ll do that. I’ll do that after 'Iron Man,'" Downey said. "And then I started thinking, ‘This is a terrible idea.'"

His resistance was short-lived, he said.

"I thought, 'Hold on, dude. Get real here. Where is your heart?'" Downey said. “My heart is A) I get to be black for a summer in my mind, so there’s something in it for me. The other thing is I get to hold up to nature the insane, self-involved hypocrisy of artists and what they think they’re allowed to do on occasion."

Read more at NBCNews.com.

Contact Us