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Avengers Endgame Tony Stark working on the Benatar

It's no secret that landing the role of Tony Stark was life-changing for Robert Downey Jr. In the early aughts his career was a shadow of what it was during the 1980s and 1990s, and while he was still making quality films like Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, he didn't exactly have the same level of popularity. That all changed in 2008 with the arrival of Jon Favreau's Iron Man, and 11 years later we're preparing to see the capstone of the epic adventure in the form of Avengers: Endgame.

Obviously that makes this a pretty big weekend for the actor, and while he has been very active on social media recently discussing his role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Tweet he posted today feels particularly poignant as a summation of his time as part of the franchise:

It goes without saying that Robert Downey Jr.'s impact on the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been absolutely massive. His ridiculous charisma is a huge part of what made the first Iron Man work so well, and rewatching the movie even now it's easy to see why people immediately fell back in love with him and became obsessed with his iteration of the character. Critics and audiences fully embraced his take on Tony Stark immediately, and it catapulted the 2008 film to a box office total of $585 million internationally.

But that was only the start. Since then he has been featured in 10 of Marvel Studios' 22 films, and his contributions are really immeasurable. It started with him giving a tiny boost to The Incredible Hulk with his quick cameo at the end of the film cementing the continuity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and since then it's been nothing but the stuff of legends.

To put a number on it, prior to the release of Avengers: Endgame the total worldwide box office earnings for the Marvel Studios films in which Robert Downey Jr. has been featured is $3,960,919,900. That is unprecedented, and it's possible that Hollywood will never see another run of its kind ever again.

Clearly the actor has a tremendous amount of love and appreciation for everything that has happened in his life since the release of Iron Man, and it will be exciting to see how it winds up molding his career going forward. We actually haven't seen him in a non-Marvel film since 2014's The Judge - though that's a streak that will come to an end next year. He's already completed work on Stephen Gaghan's The Voyage Of Doctor Dolittle, which sees him playing the titular character and will be out next January, and hes also playing a role in Jamie Foxx's debut as a writer/director - All-Star Weekend. We'll have to wait and see what the future holds for Tony Stark after Avengers: Endgame, but at the very least audiences everywhere can take comfort in the fact that we'll still have many more years of Robert Downey Jr. awesomeness on the big screen to come.

Do you have a favorite Tony Stark/Iron Man moment from the last 11 years? What will you always remember about his take on the character? Hit the comments section below with your thoughts, feelings, and opinions.