By Scott Brown
July 11, 2006 at 10:53 PM EDT

When the Robert Downey Jr. memoir was announced, a colleague speculated, only half-jokingly, about what Downey might actually be able to recall.

Well, it’s a chance I’m willing to take. I interviewed Downey a few years ago at Sundance, and let me tell you, experiencing the man in person is a real theme-park ride, full of sharp turns and unexpected drops and the occasional threat of physical harm. (It ended with a truly disturbing Hugh Grant impression, followed by Downey bronco-busting the deck railing — still the most entertaining interview of my very silly career.)

Quite simply, Downey’s one of the best actors of our time, as last year’s underrated Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang demonstrated. (I’ve not yet made the pilgrimage to the rotoscoped A Scanner Darkly, but I’m having trouble imagining how Downey could be any more animated than he already is.)

Long and short of it is, I’ll devour a Downey memoir. He’s one of the few current screen actors whose every choice, every tic, every line reading leaves you breathless, wondering how he did it. I’m sure a memoir won’t answer that (they never do, thank goodness), but maybe there’ll be a chapter on his weird, wonderful stint on Ally McBeal. That was an odd year for all of us, Bobby. But I’m guessing for you especially.

addCredit(“Robert Downey Jr.: Evan Agostini/Getty Images”)