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You can have a great day in jail and you can have a lousy day in Beverly Hills The threat of prison has been eliminated for me said Downey after his release I know I can do time now Robert Downey Jr was born April 4 1965 in New York City He began his acting career at age 5 and at age 20 joined Saturday Night Live for one season By that time Downey had developed a serious drug problem The actor began using drugs when he was eight years old when his father introduced him to marijuana He finished a drug-rehab program in 1987 but would continue to struggle with his addictions By the time Downey was 27-years-old he became known as one of the most talented actors of his generation but had also gotten a reputation as a controversial person in Hollywood Downeys drug problems continued to hurt him and his legal problems were just beginning First Downey was stopped for speeding and policemen discovered crack cocaine heroin and an unloaded gun in his car A month later he was arrested for being under the influence of drugs which was a 3rd violation of his probation Even with his legal situation Downey completed many films during the late 1990s He entered another rehab program but admitted he was using drugs again and was sentenced to three years in prison In jail he suffered from deep depression leading many of his friends and colleagues to publicly repeat their feelings that he belonged in a mental treatment facility not in prison Since 1996 the actor had been in and out of 7 rehab programs and missed many mandatory drug tests Downey was released after serving a year and entered another drug rehab center He began a role on Ally McBeal however was fired a couple months later because of his drug use He kept violating probation on the drug and weapons charges Because of his
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