Robert Downey Jr. says he’s “surprisingly open-minded” to returning as Iron Man

Marvel Studios

In the latest installment of Variety‘s Actors on Actors series, Oscar winners — and longtime friends — Jodie Foster and Robert Downey Jr. reflected on their friendship, their careers and, perhaps unexpectedly, whether or not Downey will someday put his Iron Man suit back on.

Downey’s Tony Stark sacrificed himself to save humanity and rid the galaxy of Thanos at the end of 2019’s blockbuster Avengers: Endgame, and the character’s loss has been felt in subsequent Marvel Cinematic Universe entries, including Spider-Man: No Way Home.

That said, following his Oppenheimer Oscar win, Downey has mentioned several times he’d be open to a return to the MCU — something he reiterated with Foster.

Foster, who told Elle in 2023 that the superhero genre “has lasted a little too long” for her taste, asked the actor, “Would you think of putting the suit back on again for Tony Stark?”

Downey replied, “It’s just crazily in my DNA. Probably the most like-me character I’ve ever played, even though he’s way cooler than I am. I’ve become surprisingly open-minded to the idea.”

For the record, while Downey seems optimistic about an MCU return, last year Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige told Vanity Fair about Stark’s sacrifice, “We are going to keep that moment and not touch that moment again. We all worked very hard for many years to get to that, and we would never want to magically undo it in any way.”

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