Robert Downey Sr., director of the countercultural satire Putney Swope and the father of actor Robert Downey Jr., passed away on July 7 in New York. Downey Jr. posted on Instagram after the tragic news that read, “Last night, dad passed peacefully in his sleep after years of enduring the ravages of Parkinson’s…he was a true maverick filmmaker.”
He added that, according to his stepmother’s calculations, she and his father were happily married for just over 2000 years. “According to my stepmom’s calculations, they were happily married for just over 2000 years. Rosemary Rogers-Downey, you are a saint, and our thoughts and prayers are with you,” the actor added.
Downey Sr.’s filmmaking career started in the ’60s with his indie projects. He later worked on big-budget films like Greaser’s Palace (1972) and Up the Academy (1980). He also appeared in Boogie Nights (1997), Magnolia (1999), and Tower Heist (2011). He was also featured in the film ‘To Live and Die in L.A.’, played the role of a studio manager in ‘Boogie Nights.’
The Father and son duo also appeared in several films including 1988’s Johnny Be Good. Born in New York City in 1936 as Robert Elias Jr., he later changed his surname to Downey.
Downey Sr. is also survived by his wife, bestselling author Rosemary Rogers.