Even though he heroically sacrificed his own life to save the rest of the universe during the climax of Avengers: Endgame, the speculation surrounding a potential return to the Marvel Cinematic Universe for Robert Downey Jr. has never gone away. We’ll see him again in cameo form when Black Widow finally hits theaters, but rumors abound that negotiations are going on behind the scenes to convince him to reprise the role of Tony Stark somewhere else down the line.
The actor has been pretty adamant that his time as Iron Man is over, but when you’re making the kind of money that he was for starring in an ensemble movie where you’re not required on set all day every day, it would be pretty difficult to say no. In fact, a new report breaks down the near-billion dollar profit that Avengers: Endgame made for Disney and Marvel, and it reveals that RDJ walked away with a cool $75 million.
That’s made up of a $25 million upfront salary, which isn’t anything out of the ordinary for today’s blockbuster marketplace, with a further $50 million earned through back-end deals and percentage points that see him rewarded with a slice of the profits. And when the profit alone is close to ten figures, that’s a fair chunk of change.
It certainly marks a far cry from the first time he suited up as the hero back in Jon Favreau’s Iron Man in 2008, when he was paid $500,000, with forgotten man Terrence Howard actually being the biggest earner out of the movie’s cast. Tony Stark relaunched a career that many thought would never recover from highly-publicized personal troubles into the stratosphere, and now Downey Jr. can gracefully bow out of the MCU over a decade later and hundreds of millions of dollars richer for his troubles.