Robert Downey Jr. credits Norman Lear for helping his dads career

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Robert Downey Jr. credited TV legend Norman Lear for helping take care of his family financially when his dad was an experimental director.

At a celebration of a new documentary on Downey Jr.’s dad, Lear — the 100-year-old creator of classic shows including “All in the Family” — recalled offering underground director Robert Downey Sr. a more lucrative gig.

Said Lear at the Tower Bar reception for Netflix film, “Sr.,” “In 1971 I was making a film called ‘Cold Turkey,’ and I called Bob [Downey, Sr.]  and said ‘Would you like to come out to Iowa and be an assistant?’”

Downey Sr. had written and directed the edgy, counterculture satire of the advertising world, “Putney Swope” in 1969. “Cold Turkey” starred Dick Van Dyke in a skewering of the tobacco industry, and was released by United Artists.


Norman Lear called Robert Downey Sr.,” as special of a human being as I ever knew.”

Getty Images


Norman Lear called Robert Downey Sr.,” as special of a human being as I ever knew.”

Getty Images for Netflix

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