During the recording of last week’s Oscar podcast, Robert Downey Jr.’s name came up as we saw the guy on TV looking good and flying high. Well, maybe not the last part so much. But it is incredible that he’s seem to overcome demons that have plagued him again and again, and even though he’s still listed as a “risk”, strictly speaking, everybody wants to work for this guy. He has that much frickin’ talent, and he only seems to get better with age.

Now, he’s joined up with the new comedy Tropic Thunder, which is directed by Ben Stiller and co-written by Stiller and Justin Theroux (both of whom are starring in it as well). The film is about a big-budget war movie production that goes horribly awry causing the actors to become real combatants, and interestingly enough, Downey’s character, Kirk Lazarus, is regarded as “the greatest actor of his generation,” a plaudit that Downey’s not entirely unfamiliar with. Also joining up is Jay Baruchel, who you may remember as the slow-witted boxer in Million Dollar Baby.

Between this weekend’s Zodiac, Iron Man, and this, Downey is landing some primo cinema real estate, and I really hope the mainstream appeal of the latter two flicks catapults this guy to a new level of marketability and prosperity. He deserves it.