Tony Stark and Peter Quill in Avengers: Infinity War

So … Robert Downey Jr. Announced That a Mars Rock Was Named After the Rolling Stones?

This article is over 4 years old and may contain outdated information

Recommended Videos

It was a big day for fans of confusion! Or, I mean, Robert Downey Jr. After a cryptic message on the actor’s social media, fans were beginning to wonder why he was heading to the Rose Bowl with the Rolling Stones to talk about Mars. It was trippy, fun, and a very Robert Downey Jr. message that sent me into a tailspin for the entire rest of my day.

So, with all of us (i.e. me) on the edge of our seats trying to figure out what this meant, we all thought that Robert Downey Jr. was planning on taking off to Mars, and honestly, if he went without me, I was going to be a little upset. I’d let him play The Futurist for the entire journey!

But alas, Robert Downey Jr. is not going to Mars. In fact, this announcement was about something that already happened there.

At first, when you think about the fact that this suspenseful afternoon was just for a rock being named, it almost seems funny, but then, if you really think about it, it’s kind of cool. Anything happening on Mars is new information to us because we only relatively recently started to venture out to the red planet.

Basically, when NASA’s InSight lander hit the ground on Mars to study the planet’s deep interior, its thrusters caused a rock to roll a considerable distance, and NASA nerds, being nerds like the rest of us, decided that they wanted to name it after the Rolling Stones. And since Robert Downey Jr. is apparently friends with the Stones (literally, childhood me is having a fit), they wanted him to help make it official.

Here’s the thing about this: This is great PR for both NASA and Robert Downey Jr.’s Footprint Coalition. The actor announced back in June that he had plans to work with scientists to create nanotechnology to help stop climate change and fix the planet—you know, like he’s Tony Stark or something.

So, to me, there’s no better partnership than the Footprint Coalition and NASA working together. Plus, NASA announcing anything using such a high-profile celebrity is a pretty big deal, because public support for NASA’s work is important to actually secure funding to get things done in space.

The video explaining exactly what happened played for the audience after Downey’s announcement, and the actor later shared it to his Instagram page.

Basically, RDJ got to do some cool things with the Stones and NASA, and it completely derailed my Thursday.

Just to top off the day of madness, Tom Holland also decided it was a great time to post this picture of himself and Robert Downey Jr. taking pictures together (using a shoe???) which he titled “We did it, Mr. Stark!” You know, just to take my heart out of my chest and stomp on it a bunch.


View this post on Instagram


We did it Mr Stark!

A post shared by Tom Holland (@tomholland2013) on

I don’t know what’s happening, I wish I did. But I guess an entire concert full of people just officially named a rock on Mars the “Rolling Stones Rock,” and Robert Downey Jr. was there to announce it because he’s basically just Tony Stark now, so I guess that’s all fine and normal.

(image: Marvel Entertainment)

Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!

The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—

The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Image of Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.