Sometimes social media can enlighten. Sometimes it can enrage us. Sometimes it can simply confuse us. And sometimes we can read a lot into it based on seemingly tiny moves in the space. It’s this last part that has Robert Downey Jr. fans in a bit of an uproar this week. That’s because apparently, the actor has unfollowed all of his Marvel colleagues on Instagram. In the celebrity world, this is tantamount to a breakup and fans were quick to chime in on what it could mean.
The social media move for Robert Downey Jr. was noticed Friday when it looked like, on Instagram where he has 50.7 million followers and *only* follows 43 people, none of whom now include Marvel castmates. Among the following group is mostly just various business accounts including Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin, The Smithsonian, and artist Damien Hirst among others. But there’s nary another Marvel person on that list and that has folks confused. Check out how some people reacted to the discovery.
Now, this is likely much ado about nothing. It’s not like there’s been any reported rift between Robert Downey Jr. and other folks at Marvel. It’s likely that he’s just paring down the account because there are no immediate plans to go back working in that franchise, at least for the time being. Of course, his Tony Stark/ Iron Man character died at the end of Avengers: Endgame, a truly heartbreaking and franchise-shifting moment that spelled the last moments for one of the most popular characters around. And for the foreseeable future, it looks like he’ll stay out of the mix.
So with no plans to go back to Marvel in any way, why continue following people on social media if you are looking to keep the feed lean? That is likely the full story here. But, of course, there are always ways to look way too hard into these kinds of things. Could Robert Downey Jr. return at some point? The Multiverse and other productions like What If…? are around for these kinds of possibilities. But there doesn’t appear to be any plan soon to have Iron Man make some kind of miraculous return. Not when the Marvel Cinematic Universe and working diligently to establish a whole new roster of talent and characters.
As for Robert Downey Jr. on the acting front, there are a few things in the works. Following his major disappointment and box office flop Dolittle which reportedly lost Universal up to around $100 million dollars a couple of years ago, he has still managed to secure a couple of new gigs. He’s in post-production on All-Star Weekend which features Jamie Foxx, Gerard Butler, Benicio del Toro, Eva Longoria, and Snoop Dogg among others. That thing has been in a bit of development hell and was originally supposed to hit the big screen all the way back in 2018.
Plus, his production company had a hand in Netflix’s Sweet Tooth which scored really well with critics. And there should be a return for him to the Sherlock Holmes franchise which is targeting a release date sometime hear the end of the year. Time will tell if this latest social media piece has any real weight, or if it was just a little culling of his feed.