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Jimmy Kimmel pokes fun at Robert Downey Jr.’s past struggles with drugs in Oscars 2024 opening comedy routine

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Jimmy Kimmel made an awkward quip about Robert Downey Jr.’s drug addiction during his Oscars 2024 monologue Sunday night.

“This is the highest point of Robert Downey Jr.’s long and illustrious career — well, one of the highest points,” the evening’s host quipped as the camera panned to the “Oppenheimer” star.

Downey Jr. then tapped on his nose twice, perhaps in reference to his past cocaine addiction, to which Kimmel responded, “Too on the nose? Or is that a drug motion you made?”

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“This is the highest point of Robert Downey Jr.’s long and illustrious career — well, one of the highest points,” he quipped. Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
“Too on the nose? Or is that a drug motion you made?” Kimmel continued after Downey Jr. tapped on his nose. ABC

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The “Iron Man” star, who is nominated for his role as Lewis Strauss in the Best Supporting Actor category at this year’s Academy Awards, then made a rolling motion with his hands to push the late-night host to keep the monologue moving.

Downey Jr., 58, has come a long way since he was imprisoned as inmate P50522 in 1999, when he was sentenced to three years behind bars amid his struggle with illicit substances.

The “Avengers” actor has been sober since July 2003 but has never shied away from talking about his troubled past.

The “Oppenheimer” star spent three years behind bars on a drug conviction after a 1996 bust. ABACA/Shutterstock
He continued to skip mandatory drug tests, which led to further arrests. Getty Images

Over the summer, he told “Parenthood” alum Dax Shepard on his “Armchair Expert” podcast that prison was like “being sent to a distant planet where there is no way home until the planets align.”

Downey Jr. was first arrested in 1996 for possession of heroin, cocaine and an unloaded .357-caliber Magnum. He was sentenced to three years of probation and required to undergo mandatory drug testing.

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He was arrested again in 2001 after Los Angeles police found him passed out in an alleyway. Getty Images
He finally sobered up after being sent to rehab in the early 2000s. AP

The “Tropic Thunder” star, however, skipped a drug test and had to spend four months in Los Angeles County jail, which prompted his first wife, Deborah Falconer, to leave him.

Despite the initial punishment, Downey Jr. skipped yet another drug test and landed the 3-year sentence at a state prison in California.

“You could just feel the evil in the air, and that was no trouble at all because it was kind of like just being in a really bad neighborhood,” Downey Jr. told Shepard. “There was no opportunity there. There was only threats.”

After his first wife left him, the “Tropic Thunder” star met and married film producer Susan Levin. FilmMagic
He’s nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category for his role as Lewis Strauss in “Oppenheimer.” ©Universal/Courtesy Everett Collection

Unfortunately, his drug abuse didn’t end there, as Downey Jr. was arrested on drug charges in April 2001 after Los Angeles police found him in an alleyway.

Production behind the hit show “Ally McBeal” fired him and he was sent to rehab.

His co-star Emily Blunt, seen here, is also nominated for her role in the film. Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

With help from his friends, including since-disgraced actor Mel Gibson, the “Sherlock Holmes” star sobered up and eventually met his second and current wife, Susan Levin, whom he’s described as his “bedrock, touchstone and lucky stars.”

Downey Jr. and Levin married in a star-studded wedding in the Hamptons in 2005 that featured performances by Billy Joel and Sting.

“Susan is his blessing,” a source close to Downey Jr. told Page Six.

The couple share son Exton, 12, and daughter Avri, 9. He’s also father to son Indio, 30, whom he shares with Falconer.

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Entertainment

Actor Cole Brings Plenty, known for ‘1923’, tragically passes away at 27 following accusations of domestic violence.

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The entertainment industry is mourning the loss of Cole Brings Plenty, a talented actor known for his roles in TV shows like the “Yellowstone” spinoff, “1923.” Tragically, Cole has passed away at the young age of 27, leaving behind a legacy of creativity and passion for his craft.

The news of Cole’s death came as a shock to many, especially after he was recently named as a suspect in a domestic violence case. The Lawrence Kansas Police Department had been investigating an incident involving Cole, which occurred on the same day he went missing. Despite the circumstances surrounding his death, Cole’s family and friends are grieving the loss of a beloved son, nephew, and colleague.

Cole’s father, Joe Brings Plenty, confirmed the heartbreaking news in a statement shared on social media by his uncle, Mo Brings Plenty. The family expressed their gratitude for the outpouring of support and prayers they received during the search for Cole. His father requested privacy as they come to terms with their grief and process the loss of their beloved son.

In the wake of Cole’s passing, his talent agency, Phirgun Mair, expressed their shock and sadness over the tragic news. The agency described Cole as a talented individual with a promising career ahead of him, and they mourned the loss of a bright young star taken too soon.

Cole’s death has left a void in the entertainment industry, where he was known for his roles in popular TV shows and his work as a model. He was a student at Haskell Indian Nations University, pursuing his education while also pursuing his passion for acting. Cole’s Instagram page reflects his dedication to his craft and his love for storytelling through his roles on screen.

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Despite the challenges he faced in his personal life, Cole was a rising star with a promising future ahead of him. His talent and dedication to his craft will be remembered by those who knew and worked with him in the industry. The entertainment community is mourning the loss of a talented actor taken too soon, and they are sending their thoughts and prayers to Cole’s family and loved ones during this difficult time.

As the investigation into Cole’s death continues, the entertainment industry reflects on the loss of a young talent who was just beginning to make his mark in the world of television and film. Cole’s legacy will live on through his work on screen and the memories shared by those who knew and loved him.

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