From Addict To Avenger: The Journey Of Robert Downey, Jr.

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The 41st Annual People's Choice Awards - Show

It was 1999, and Robert Downey, Jr., an Oscar-nominated actor, teetered on the edge of a chasm. If Superior Court Judge Lawrence Mira — who had seen Downey stand before him on several occasions — had taken mercy on him, he might be dead now; it’s a fact that the actor recognizes. But Mira had no mercy left to grant. Downey had used up the judge’s goodwill with a series of bad choices, and the judge no longer saw the benefit of court-mandated rehabs and facilities.

“It’s like I’ve got a shotgun in my mouth, my finger on the trigger and I like the taste of gun metal,” Downey said, pleading his case to stay free of prison.

“We tried rehabilitation, and it simply hasn’t worked,” the judge responded.

With a slam of the gavel, Downey’s fate was decided… three years in prison. It was the culmination of missteps in…

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