Terrence Howard Reveals Feeling Betrayed by Robert Downey Jr. After Assisting to Secure Iron Man Role: “I need the help I gave you”

Terrence Howard betrayed by RDJ

In the inaugural ‘Iron Man’ film, Terrence Howard portrayed the character of James Rhodes, a significant role often seen as a co-lead alongside Iron Man. Interestingly, when Howard landed the role, the part of Iron Man had yet to be cast.

Reportedly, the studio initially favored another actor, but Howard relinquished $1 million from his own salary to secure an audition for Robert Downey Jr.

After experiencing a string of personal setbacks, Howard found himself replaced by Don Cheadle, a move that nearly derailed his career. In a recent discussion on Joe Rogan’s podcast, Howard candidly shared his emotional journey following the studio’s decision, expressing surprise that he felt the most hurt by Robert Downey Jr. Howard revealed that he reached out to Downey Jr. for assistance when he faced the possibility of losing the role but received no response, leading to a three-year silence between them.

When this other thing happened, I’m calling Robert and he’s doing Sherlock Homes. I called him 27 times and I leave a message. I’m calling his assistant. I’m like, ‘I need the help I gave you.’ I didn’t hear from him until 3 years later when I bumped into him at Brian Grazer’s wedding. But at that time I’d had Empire or whatever and I came back he was like, ‘Oh but everything worked out for you.’ That broke me a little bit.

Terrence Howard revealed that upon signing on for Iron Man, he secured a three-picture deal with escalating pay. However, following personal challenges, the studio significantly slashed his salary post the first film. Disheartened by this, Howard disclosed that the studio promptly approached Don Cheadle for his role. Despite these events, he was disenchanted by the studio’s depiction of him as problematic on set.

They said, ‘We want Terrence but we want him to come back for a million dollars, instead of the 8 million that we had agreed to. My agent had an emotional reaction to a business decision and he said, ‘F-you’, and hung up the phone. Immediately, they go to Don Cheadle. But instead of just doing that they had to spend, ‘Oh, he was terrible on set,’ and all of these things and went through all this stuff.

Renegotiating deals is common in the industry, typically resulting in pay increases due to an actor’s rising popularity. It’s surprising to hear about RDJ’s involvement in this, given his reputation as one of the kindest individuals in Hollywood. What are your thoughts on this? Share them in the comments below!

Notify of
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments