Before he was Tony Stark or Charlie Chaplin or even Ian from 'Weird Science,' Robert Downey Jr. was just a kid growing up in New York City. Of course, compared to some of his fellow actors, RDJ had more of a head start in the industry. After all, his father, Robert Downey Sr., is an actor, writer and director, who ended up casting his son at the age five in 'Pound.'

As for the photo below, it was taken in 1982, when Downey Jr. was attending Santa Montica High School (he had moved out West after his parents divorce). That same year, he dropped out to pursue acting full time. His first post-dropout roll? Playing Stewart in the 1983 film, 'Baby It's You.'

The pre-fame pic comes courtesy of Snakkle, which features a ton of images of stars before they were famous (we prefer the Celeb Roommates Gallery, featuring pics of Adam Sandler and Ryan Reynolds).

Downey Jr. can be seen reprising his role as Sherlock Holmes in the this year's 'Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows,' out Dec. 16.

[via Snakkle]

[Photos: WireImage, Seth Poppel/Yearbook Library]

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