Being a frontman for The Avengers and the Marvel Cinematic Universe is practically a full-time job for Iron Man star Robert Downey Jr., but he still manages to take time out between blockbuster comic book movies to cleanse his palette with different projects. From comedies like Tropic Thunder and Due Date to dramas like The Soloist, the actor is keeping his work schedule diverse.
Falling somewhere between comedy and drama (but probably closer to the latter) is David Dobkin’s upcoming film The Judge, which stars Downey Jr. as a lawyer called Hank Palmer who specializes in defending the rich and guilty. In the first trailer for The Judge, Hank is shown getting called back to his home town to grieve the passing of his mother, and soon finds himself tasked with defending his father, respected Judge Joseph Palmer (Robert Duvall), from a murder charge.
Downey Jr. himself posted a link to the trailer on Twitter with the accompanying note, “This is the kind of movie I grew up wanting to make. Only took 49 years.” Though he fires off some of his customary fast-talking wit at the beginning of the trailer, it’s clear that The Judge will be an opportunity for Downey Jr. to really show off his talent for emotionally-charged drama.
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The Judge also stars Billy Bob Thornton as prosecuting lawyer Dwight Dickham, along with Vincent D’Onofrio, Melissa Leo, Vera Farmiga and Leighton Meester. It marks a broad change from Dobkin’s usual brand of broad comedy, which includes movies like The Change-Up and The Wedding Crashers. The script for The Judge was originally penned by Nick Schenk (Gran Torino) and then later rewritten by newcomer Bill Dubuque.
Downey Jr. and Duvall are both screen legends in their own right and it will definitely be great to see them playing off one another as father and son. Keep an eye out for The Judge this fall.
The Judge is out in theaters on October 10, 2014.
Source: Village RoadShow and Warner Bros.