Robert Downey Jr.’s crown as one of the biggest stars in the business started slipping almost as soon as he ended his career-defining run as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Tony Stark. The actor’s first non-MCU role since 2014’s legal drama The Judge bombed hard at the box office to the surprise of absolutely nobody, but 2020 has been such a wild ride that Dolittle still ranks as the third highest-grossing movie of the year behind only Bad Boys For Life and Sonic the Hedgehog.
The 55 year-old doesn’t have any other projects announced apart from the long-awaited third entry in the Sherlock Holmes franchise, which is still penciled in for release next December with Rocketman‘s Dexter Fletcher replacing Guy Ritchie behind the camera. But Downey Jr. and co-star Jude Law are the only members of the cast that have been announced so far and progress on the project has been slow.
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Of course, rumors have been swirling around a potential return to the MCU from almost the second Avengers: Endgame faded to black, but we’ve now heard from our sources that RDJ would much rather focus on the Sherlock Holmes franchise for a while and he’s reportedly told Warner Bros. that he wants to kick off a whole new trilogy after the third installment has been released. That doesn’t mean he won’t be returning to the MCU, as a comeback for Stark in some form is still on the cards, but you can expect to see a lot more of him as the iconic detective over the coming years.
According to our intel – which comes from the same sources that told us a new National Treasure movie is in development and that Netflix is making a Witcher prequel, both of which were correct – Downey Jr. is looking to keep playing the character for a while yet, given how successful the franchise has been thus far, and Warner Bros. is keen to have him stick around. After all, both of the Sherlock Holmes movies earned well over $500 million each at the box office, and if the next outing pulls in similar numbers, then he’ll be no doubt be looking to focus his energy on making more of the stylish literary adaptations.