This Celebrity's Awkward Robert Downey Jr. Encounter Is One For The Books

The downright hilarious June Diane Raphael is the wingman every woman has always wanted — just maybe not when it comes to celeb encounters. Once upon a time, the 36-year-old climbed her way out of her NYC apartment and into Hollywood alongside her quick-witted humor and BFF/fellow comedian Casey Wilson. Since, she’s worked with stars like Drew Barrymore, Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson, and currently icons Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin in the Netflix hit Grace & Frankie . She’s done quite alright for herself, and being surrounded by the most A-list as they come is nothing new for her. But being in the game for so many years and even married to a fellow actor, Paul Scheer, doesn’t change the fact that approaching a celebrity is pretty freaking terrifying. Even for a celebrity, according to Raphael.

“I would never go up to someone,” the actress tells Bustle. And her hubby is the same way. That doesn’t mean she won’t totally throw him under the bus, however, which is amazing. “I will totally sell out my husband. He’ll really freak out about weird comic book artists and people I don’t know at all and he wouldn't never say anything to them,” she says. “We had dinner next to someone he loves and he’s like, ‘No, no, no, I’m not going to go up to them.’”


One time, though, Raphael sold her man out and it was truly one for the books. At Comic Con one year, Raphael and her husband made complete fools of themselves in front of none other than Robert Downey Jr., and she blames the margaritas consumed just prior to the encounter. Who wouldn’t need a buzz seeing RDJ, though? Let’s be real.

A little backstory: Raphael was in the 2007 film Zodiac, as was Downey. “I have been in the same room as [him] before… I never worked with him, but I did meet him. So if anyone had a right to go up to him, it was probably me,” she says. But, when seeing him again years later, she did just the opposite. “Paul and I had margaritas at lunch, we were real loose. And then we proceeded to go to the Iron Man sneak peek and a friend of ours got us backstage,” she explains. “Paul had worked on a movie with this crew member, who said he was Robert Downey Jr.’s best friend.”

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Next thing they knew, Downey was literally next to them. “As we were walking to the panel [as] audience members, we just happened to be shoulder-to-shoulder with Robert Downey Jr. We had probably two margaritas each flowing through our bodies, I was like, ‘I feel great, there’s Robert Downey Jr. surrounded by body guards. Cool,’” she says, starting to laugh. “We start walking and I’m holding Paul’s hand, and I see him turn to Robert Downey Jr. and go, ‘Hey! I know someone who’s one of your best friends,’” the actress says. Scheer proceeded to mention the movie crew member’s name (and self-proclaimed Downey BFF) to the actor… who had no idea who he was.

“[He] was lovely and just like, ‘I don’t know who that is,’” Raphael recalls. “I literally let go of [Paul’s] hand, I slowed down and just let him go. I was like, I am not related to you.” Mortifying as it is completely hilarious. At least now, they can laugh it off. “It was so bold and wrong and strong, like, ‘Hey, Bobby!’ It was so bad,” she jokes. “And then of course body guards started to surround Paul, and I was just like, ‘I don’t know you.’”

Looks like celebrities are also allowed to make complete and utter fools of themselves in front of stars they’re awestruck by. We are not alone. And those margaritas were most definitely worth it, by the way.

Image: Giphy