how long was robert downey jr in jail

How Long Was Robert Downey Jr. In Jail?

Robert Downey Jr. is a name that everyone knows. He is considered one of Hollywood’s top leading men, with a string of hugely successful blockbuster movies to his name, such as Iron Man and Captain America. But what many people may not know is that Robert Downey Jr. spent time in jail.

Early Run-Ins with The Law

The beginning of Robert Downey Jr.’s legal troubles began in the late 1980s. He started to experiment with drugs and alcohol, and this eventually led to a series of arrests for drug possession, drug trafficking and DUI, mostly in California.

Jail Time

Robert Downey Jr. was finally sentenced to three years in state prison in 1999 after being found guilty of illegal possession of a controlled substance. He served less than a year in jail, but was then put on parole and had to complete a drug rehabilitation program.

Rehabilitation and Redemption

After completing the rehabilitation program, Robert Downey Jr. started to make a comeback in the movie industry, with critics praising his performance in the 2003 film “The Singing Detective”. Since then he has become an A-list actor and starred in over 40 movies.


In conclusion, Robert Downey Jr. was in jail for less than a year, but he has certainly made the most of his second chance. From being a convicted criminal, he has become one of Hollywood’s most beloved actors. His story shows that there is hope for anyone who finds themselves in a difficult situation.

How long Was Robert Downey Jr in Jail?

Robert Downey Jr., one of Hollywood’s most famous actors and filmmakers, made headlines when he was sentenced to jail in the late 1990s. His legal woes led to questions about how long the actor was actually in jail.

The Legal Issues

For much of the 1990s, Robert Downey Jr. had a tumultuous relationship with the law. He was arrested multiple times on drug offenses, including possession of a controlled substance, being under the influence of drugs, and parole violation. After his 1997 guilty plea to two counts of possession of a controlled substance, he was sentenced to three years in a state prison.

Serving His Sentence

Robert Downey Jr. started serving his sentence in August of 1999. He spent less than one year behind bars, as he was released from prison on August 2, 2000, after serving 11 months of his 3-year sentence. He was transferred to a traditional rehabilitation facility for the remaining two years and completed his parole in 2002.

Life After Jail

After his release, Downey Jr. went into an extensive rehabilitation program, which included counseling and therapy. He kicked his addictions and slowly returned to Hollywood, eventually landing a role in 2003’s The Singing Detective. His performance got him an Academy Award nomination and rekindled his on-screen career. Since then, he has acted in numerous top-grossing films, including the Iron Man and Avengers franchises.

Today, Downey Jr. is considered one of Hollywood’s most successful and influential actors and is a hallmark example of how one can recover from their youthful mistakes and still make a large impact on the world.


Robert Downey Jr. spent 11 months in prison out of the 3-year sentence he was handed after pleading guilty to two counts of possession of a controlled substance. After his release, he worked hard to kick his addictions and rekindle his successful acting career. His story serves as an inspiring example of second chances and redemption.

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