The first photos from Ben Stiller‘s Tropic Thunder and Kevin Smith‘s Zack and Miri Make a Porno surfaced online this week, and though the Zack and Miri still is basically just your garden-variety shot of the stars in action, the Thunder shot had film nerds across the Web spitting their Yoo-Hoos all over their computer screens.
As illustrated by the helpful zoom in the lower left-hand corner, the actor you’re meant to focus on here is the fellow in the middle. If he doesn’t immediately look familiar to you, allow us to jog your memory: You loved him in such films as The Pick-Up Artist, Less Than Zero, and Heart & Souls.
Give up? Yeah, that’s Robert Downey Jr. Let’s have Entertainment Weekly break it down for us:
[Downey] plays Kirk Lazarus, a very serious Oscar-winning actor cast in the most expensive Vietnam War film ever. Problem is, Lazarus’s character, Sgt. Osiris, was originally written as black. So Lazarus decides to dye his skin and play Osiris, um, authentically. Funny? Sure. Dangerous? That’s an understatement. ”If it’s done right, it could be the type of role you called Peter Sellers to do 35 years ago,” Downey says. ”If you don’t do it right, we’re going to hell.”
Tropic Thunder debuts August 15, but we’ll only have to wait until March 17 to see the trailer — which, according to EW, features Downey trying “to bond with a real African-American castmate by quoting the theme song from ‘The Jeffersons.'”
Source: Entertainment Weekly