Filmmaker Robert Downey Sr. Dies at 85

Filmmaker Robert Downey Sr. Dies at 85
Director Robert Downey Sr. speaks onstage during The 25th American Cinematheque Award Honoring Robert Downey Jr. held at The Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Oct. 14, 2011. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Filmmaker and actor Robert Downey Sr., father of actor Robert Downey Jr., has died. He was 85.

Downey Jr. wrote on Instagram that his father died late Tuesday in his sleep at home in New York. He had Parkinson’s disease for more than five years.

“According to my stepmom’s calculations, they were happily married for just over 2000 years,” Downey Jr. wrote.

Born in New York City in 1936 as Robert Elias Jr., he later changed his surname to Downey—his stepfather’s name—in order to enlist in the army early. After the army, he got into filmmaking by chance while living in New York with his sister.

The last film he directed was the 2005 documentary “Rittenhouse Square,” about a small Philadelphia park.

The elder Downey is survived by his son Robert Downey Jr., daughter Allyson Downey, and wife, bestselling author Rosemary Rogers.

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