ROBERT DOWNEY. JR. (John Royce) won widespread acclaim,
an Academy Award nomination and the British Academy Award (BAFTA)
for his uncanny personification of the great silent screen comedian
Charlie Chaplin in Richard Attenborough's "Chaplin."
The son of maverick filmmaker Robert Downey, Sr., Downey, Jr.
was born in New York City, where he lived in Greenwich Village
before moving to Los Angeles as a teenager. He attended Santa
Monica High School, then moved back east to pursue acting in OffBroadway
plays and regional theater.
As a youngster, he made his film debut playing a canine in his
father's controversial 1970 absurdist satire, "Pound."
He appeared in "Greaser's Palace," also under his father's
direction, in 1972, then returned to the big screen a decade later
in John Sayles' criticallyacclaimed comedy, "Baby,
It's You." In between film assignments, he served as a cast
regular on "Saturday Night Live" during the 198586
Celebrated for the vigor and emotional depth with which he imbues
his characters, Downey, Jr. has won accolades for such roles as
the flamboyant Julian Wells in "Less Than Zero," the
gay sibling who shares an unconventional Thanksgiving family reunion
in Jodie Foster's "Home for the Holidays" and the sardonic
talkshow host Wayne Gale in Oliver Stone's blistering satire,
"Natural Born Killers."
Downey, Jr. also starred in the recent film version of "Richard
III" and includes among his film credits "First Born,"
"Weird Science," "Back to School," "The
PickUp Artist," "True Believer," "1969,"
"Chances Are," "Air America," "Soapdish,"
"Heart and Souls," "Only You," the Oscarwinning
costume epic "Restoration," "The Last Party,"
Robert Altman's "Short Cuts" and "Too Much Sun,"
again working with his father.
He recently reunited with Downey, Sr. in "Hugo Pool,"
and also starred in James Toback's "Two Girls and a Guy"
and, opposite Wesley Snipes in Mike Figgis' film, "One Night
Stand." He will next be seen in Robert Altman's "The
Gingerbread Man," followed by a starring role as a serial
killer in Neil Jordan's "In Dreams."
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