Robert Downey Jr: Do Instagram Unfollows Confirm MCU Exit?

Robert Downey Jr kicked off off the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) with his feature Iron Man in 2008. However, in Avengers: Endgame, his death brought about the end of an era and fan theories on the different ways he could return.

Iron Man, aka Tony Stark, was one of the leaders of The Avengers and an integral part of the team.

However, recent unfollows on Instagram have fans worried this could be the truest confirmation of Downey's intention to walk away from the MCU for good.

On July 2, fans notices Downey's Instagram account was no longer following Marvel castmates and colleagues, including Chris Evans, Tom Holland and Jon Favreau.

Fans took to Twitter to share their concern about what this could mean, especially given a theory of Tony Stark's reappearance in the upcoming Black Widow film.

One user, @starkxgrayson, wrote: "ROBERT DOWNEY JR UNFOLLOWED ALL MARVEL CAST MEMBERS WHATTTTTTT

"On instagram* IM FREAKING OUT WHY WOULD HE DO THAT"

ROBERT DOWNEY JR UNFOLLOWED ALL MARVEL CAST MEMBERS WHATTTTTTT

— krish ⎊⧗ loki/bw era (@starkxgrayson) July 1, 2021

Another, @zimabvrnes, wrote: "Yeah but he's known these people for over a decade. To unfollow all of them, people he called friends, makes no sense. It's a little... awful for him to do. It's not like they all f***ed him over at the same time.

"If someone f***ing unfollowed me that I've known for a better part of a decade, as a person I'd be hurt as s***.

"Guess I'm one of the few people left on the internet that still has a heart. Sue me for having emotions"

If someone fucking unfollowed me that I've known for a better part of a decade, as a person I'd be hurt as shit.

Guess I'm one of the few people left on the internet that still has a heart. Sue me for having emotions 🖕🏽

— Andi ♍ (@zimabvrnes) July 2, 2021

Other users such as @AEmilyHp, @Mishalocked24 and @salutjsuisanais instead shared memes and MCU images, joking about how other cast members and fans are feeling after the unfollows.

Tom Holland when he saw that rdj unfollowed him on Instagram pic.twitter.com/K0by2dwlGm

— Mobius Supremacie (@salutjsuisanais) July 1, 2021

RDJ unfollowed Marvel's cast on Instagram

Me: pic.twitter.com/HgFNOHG68y

— Gr⍟ceWilson⧗》L४ki glorious days (@AEmilyHP) July 1, 2021

Why did RDJ unfollow the whole Marvel cast from ig—

I CAN'T GO THROUGH ANOTHER DIVORCE AFTER J2'S. WTF WTF. pic.twitter.com/Lj8FCKlLcj

— Eleonora (@Mishalocked24) July 1, 2021

While some fans were "freaking out," others had a clear explanation, telling their fellow fans it was likely due to Downey moving his Instagram account to focus on his business and environmental causes, rather than his movies.

Some also speculated as to whether he may have a new social media manager.

However, Downey is still following his former castmates on Twitter, showing this is not an example of severed relationships.

It does beg the question, however, of whether Tony Stark could reappear in the MCU, given Downey's focus on non-acting projects as shown on his Instagram account.

In a video with Buzzfeed in 2019, actor Jeff Goldblum seemingly confirmed Downey's return as a voice cast member in the upcoming series What If?

He said: "I went to the Disney studios and I recorded the Grandmaster's voice for an episode of a show that's gonna be on Disney Plus that's called What If.

"It's an animated version of all the characters we know and love from Marvel and this episode included the Grandmaster and Iron Man, so Robert Downey will do a voice for that..."

Adding to this, a new LEGO toy of Iron Man in a Sakaarian suit was released, suggesting he will be heading to take on the Grandmaster alongside Valkyrie in the animated program.

At the moment, Downey's presence in What If? has not been confirmed.

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