Cobra Kai star Ralph Macchio left a heartwarming message for Robert Downey Sr. after the famed director's passing on Wednesday (July 7). Variety reports Downey Sr. died in his sleep in his home in New York. The director's son Robert Downey Jr. confirmed his passing on Instagram with a post that read: "Last night, dad passed peacefully in his sleep after years of enduring the ravages of Parkinson's…he was a true maverick filmmaker."
"Heartfelt thank you to Robert Downey, Sr. for giving me my first role on film in Up The Academy. Once again with Too Much Sun. But mostly for introducing me 2 early films Putney Swope, Greasers Palace. & my start as a young actor. A true maverick is right. RIP," Macchio wrote, echoing Downey Jr.'s choice of words.
Heartfelt thank you to Robert Downey, Sr. for giving me my first role on film in "Up The Academy." Once again with "Too Much Sun." But mostly for introducing me 2 early films "Putney Swope" "Greasers Palace." & my start as a young actor. A true maverick is right. RIP https://t.co/BXwYsXS0qO— Ralph Macchio (@ralphmacchio) July 7, 2021
The death of the famed star was very much felt throughout the film community, with many sending in their condolences or fond memories of him. Ask every exec at HBO when asked who should direct the pilot to my Yell series the first name I said was Robert Downey Sr. Few filmmakers have taught me how to see as aggressively & humorously as he has…from Greaser's Palace to Putney Swope his imagination knew no bounds. RIP," Jeremy O. Harris wrote. "The great Robert Downey Sr. has died. He was a pioneering underground filmmaker, a true original, and a lovely man. (A prince, even.)," said film critic Bilge Ebiri, who once interviewed Downey Sr. for the Village Voice in 2016.
Downey Sr., largely recognized for his 1969 hit film Putney Swope, also acted in a collection of popular films, including Boogie Nights (1997), Magnolia (1999) and The Family Man (2000). He was married three times. His first marriage to Elsie Ann Ford lasted from 1962-82. He then married Laura Ernst from 1991-94. The first marriage ended in divorce. His second wife died in '94. He's survived by his third wife, author Rosemary Rogers, and his two children (whom he shared with Ford), Robert Downey Jr. and Allyson Downey.