Robert Downey, Jr. to Produce Rehab Drama for Showtime

By Shawn Dwyer 06/17/14

The A-list star and recovering addict will presumably draw from his own experiences for the series.

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No stranger to drugs and stints in rehab, star Robert Downey, Jr. is in the early stages of producing a rehab drama for Showtime under his Team Downey production banner.

The project remains untitled at the moment, but will follow a Venice Beach rehab community circa 1983, where drugs and alcohol run rampant.

First reported by Deadline Hollywood, the pilot for the proposed series will be written by scribe Gary Lennon, who has previously written for such shows as Justified and Orange Is the New Black. Downey Jr.'s wife, Susan Downey, will also serve as a producer.

Of course, Downey, Jr. has had incalculable experience with drug and alcohol abuse throughout his life. In the 1980s and 1990s, he was arrested numerous times for drug possession while going in and out of both rehab and prison in a halfhearted attempt to get clean.

In 1999, following numerous arrests that led to a lengthy prison term for repeatedly violating the terms of his parole for previous convictions, Downey admitted in court that he had been addicted to drugs since he was eight years old and that he had been struggling to stop. "It's like I've got a shotgun in my mouth, with my finger on the trigger, and I like the taste of the gun metal," he said at the time.

With his career in the toilet and his marriage to Deborah Falconer at an end, Downey, Jr. finally got sober in 2003 before launching a hard-fought comeback – aided by friend and fellow addict Mel Gibson – that culminated in the blockbuster Iron Man (2008), which put the actor back on top. Ever since, he has enjoyed unprecedented success while maintaining a firm grasp on his sobriety.

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Shawn Dwyer is a writer, editor and content producer living in Los Angeles. You can find him on Linkedin.