Robert John Downey, Jr. is born in New York City’s Greenwich Village to parents in the entertainment industry. His father, Robert Downey, Sr, is actor, filmmaker, and producer, and his mother Elise Ford, is a singer and dancer. He has a sister named Allyson who is two years older than him. His father’s work requires the family to move a lot, and in 1977, his parents divorce. He lives with his mother in New York, while his sister stays with their dad in California. On his bohemian-influenced upbringing:
But speaking of the way I grew up, my mom and dad were actually kind of squares who found themselves entrenched in the counterculture, underground film making world. So it was all the people you would expect to be around Greenwich Village at that time, and to me, it was just really natural.