Robert Downey Jr. challenges Quentin Tarantino's Marvel comments

Robert Downey Jr. in Avengers: Endgame
(Image credit: Disney/Marvel)

Robert Downey Jr. is the latest actor to address Quentin Tarantino’s Marvel comments. The Pulp Fiction director said that he feels it’s the characters in superhero movies, rather than the actors themselves, who are the real stars. 

Downey Jr. was asked about the comments as well as how superhero movies seem to be a point of contention among directors. "I think our opinions on these matters say a lot about us," he told Deadline. "I think that we are in a time and place that I unwittingly contributed to, where IP has taken precedence over principle and personality. But it’s a double-edged sword. A piece of IP is only as good as the human talent you get to represent it, and you can have some great IP even if it’s coming from an auteur or a national treasure of a writer-director, and if you don’t have the right kind of artist playing that role, you’ll never know how good it could have been. I think that creatively it is a waste of time to be at war with ourselves."

Downey Jr. added that he feels like there's enough room for everything in Hollywood. Speaking specifically, he said he's grateful for big blockbusters like Top Gun: Maverick and Avatar: The Way of Water because they make room for films like Armageddon Time

The Iron Man star also said he’s just had an "exceptionally transformational" experience working with Christopher Nolan on Oppenheimer so feels particularly inspired by all kinds of different projects that are being made.

"I would just say, before we cast aspersions on each other, undergo your own renaissance and see if it doesn’t change your mind a little bit," he added. "Reinvent yourself before you decide that somebody else doesn’t know what they’re doing or that something is keeping you from doing your best, or that something is better than something else."

Tarantino made his comments on the 2 Bears 1 Cave podcast.  "You have all these actors who have become famous playing these characters," the director said. "But they're not movie stars. Right? Captain America is the star. Or Thor is the star. I mean, I'm not the first person to say that. I think that's been said a zillion times… but it's like, you know, it's these franchise characters that become a star." 

Downey Jr.’s new documentary about his father called Sr. is available on Netflix now. For what else to watch, check out our list of best Netflix documentaries to stream.

Fay Watson

I’m an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering TV and film for the Total Film and SFX sections online. I previously worked as a Senior Showbiz Reporter and SEO TV reporter at Express Online for three years. I've also written for The Resident magazines and Amateur Photographer, before specializing in entertainment.