Robert Downey Jr. knows better than most how it feels to hit rock bottom, with the actor once lauded as one of the finest young talents in the industry before succumbing to his personal demons, leaving his career lying in tatters after a series of highly publicized drug-related arrests and stints in rehab rendered him uninsurable to all of the major studios.
However, having overcome his problems and mounted a minor comeback, Downey Jr. was instantly launched towards the very top of the Hollywood A-list in 2008 thanks to his casting as Tony Stark, and the perfect marriage of actor and character saw Iron Man become a massive box office success as well as one of the most important and influential blockbusters ever made.
The 55 year-old is well aware of the benefits that a second chance can provide, and he got his own from the most unexpected of places when Mel Gibson paid the insurance bond so that Downey Jr. could star in 2003’s The Singing Detective when nobody else would hire him. And now, it’s been rumored that he’s looking to lend a similar hand to longtime close friend Johnny Depp.
The Tropic Thunder star is reportedly lobbying hard to get Depp a role in the upcoming Sherlock Holmes 3, with the latter now finding offers hard to come by following his protracted legal battles with ex-wife Amber Heard. RDJ’s wife Susan Downey has been a producer on both entries so far, and the couple’s Team Downey company will presumably be heavily involved in the third film, too, which would give them plenty of input when it comes to casting. In fact, according to “a senior source at Warner Bros., Bob wants Johnny on board, come hell or high water.”
If it does end up happening, it would be much more than a simple olive branch, because it can’t be denied that Depp’s eccentric and bohemian screen persona would be a perfect fit for the anachronistic steampunk aesthetic of the Sherlock Holmes franchise, and having him play a major role like the villain could potentially result in something pretty special.