Robert Downey Sr, Film director and father to actor Robert Downey Jr, passed away on Tuesday, aged 85. He is mostly known for his 1969 satire “Putney Swope”.
Downey Sr was suffering from Parkinson’s for almost five years now and peacefully passed away in his sleep at his home in New York City.
Paying tribute to him, his son, Robert Downey Jr posted an old photo of his father with the caption, “RIP Bob D. Sr. 1936-2021…Last night, dad passed peacefully in his sleep after years of enduring the ravages of Parkinson’s. He was a true maverick filmmaker, and remained remarkably optimistic throughout. According to my stepmoms calculations, they were happily married for just over 2000 years.”
Putney Swope was Downey Sr’s most celebrated work as it starred Arnold Johnson as the lead and the only black man as an advertising executive. Incidentally, in the movie, Johnson’s voice was dubbed by Downey Sr as the former could never recall his lines.
His other famous works include Pound (1970) where both his children, Allyson (then aged 7) and Robert Downey Jr (then aged 5) made their debuts. His 1972 Greaser’s Palace was called “the most adventurous American movie so far this year” by the Time Magazine. He is also known for directing three episodes of the famous show called The Twilight Zone. Downey Sr also had short roles in several movies including Tower Heist (2011), From Other Worlds (2004) and Boogie Nights (1997).
Robert Downey Sr was born in Manhattan to Robert Elias Sr, who worked in restaurant management and Elizabeth (née McLauchlen), a model. He later took the surname of his step-father, James Downey.
He is survived by his wife, Rosemary Rogers-Downey and children, Allyson Downey and Robert Downey Jr.