Robert Downey Jr. admits he’s “part of the problem” that makes it increasingly difficult to get mid-budget drama films like his new film ‘The Judge’ made in Hollywood of late, but he’s not sorry for being the highest paid actor in the world.
Watch our exclusive interview with Robert Downey Jr., Robert Duvall, and director David Dobkin above.
‘The Judge’ is the first film from Team Downey, the production company he recently set up with his super-producer wife Susan. As the star of a series of blockbusters that are precisely the sort of films edging productions like this out of marketplace, the ‘Iron Man’ star is in a unique position to comment.
He admits that the demand for blockbusters in the multiplexes probably makes it difficult to raise funding, but he says Warner Bros. greenlit the film immediately after reading the script.
“The poster looks like this courtroom drama,” he explains, “But it’s this bigger tale about home and family and it’s actually quite witty.”
Duvall, who plays the titular Judge, a man facing not just old-age but a murder trial too, says the way films get funded has changed dramatically since the 1970s.
“It’s easier to raise $100m than $2m [in Hollywood],” says the ‘Godfather’ star.
“Knowing the $100m film might fail anyway. It’s a strange thing Hollywood the way it works. But they do make them. They make about 300 independent films a year but most of them go down the drain. They don’t get distribution.”
Downey Jr., who reportedly made $50m playing Tony Stark in ‘The Avengers’, probably didn’t give himself a similar wage for ‘The Judge’, but he doesn’t think he should feel guilty for being the best-paid actor on the planet.
“I always say it’s like with athletes you know?” he explains.
“If you can make that deal I guess you deserve it on some level. And it always changes… it never lasts.”
It’s great to see Downey Jr. outside of the blockbuster realm in ‘The Judge’. He plays a high-flying lawyer who gets drawn into his father’s court case when he returns home for his late mother’s funeral.
It’s the kind of drama we don’t see enough of in Hollywood any more, so if it takes the highest-paid actor putting some of his hard-earned cash back into smaller cinema fare, we’re all for it.
‘The Judge’ is in UK cinemas from today.
Image credit: Warner Bros.