Boy tells Downey Jr. 'Iron Man' mask helped him speak

(CNN) - Robert Downey Jr. is appearing in his first movie outside of the role of "Iron Man" since 2014.

Robert Downey Jr. attends the LA premiere of "Dolittle" at the Regency Village Theatre on Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, in Los Angeles. | Photo by Richard Shotwell / Invision / AP

He is starring as the famous literary doctor who talks to animals in "Dolittle".

As part of his promotional tour, Downey Jr. guest-hosted "The Ellen DeGeneres Show".

He interviewed "Dolittle" co-star Rami Malek, but said his favorite part of the appearance was meeting a 10-year-old fan named Vincent.

Vincent's parents said he had trouble communicating and was diagnosed as having autism at age four. They said his communication skills improved when he got an Iron Man mask at age nine.

Downery Jr. later presented the family with a $20,000 check from Shutterfly to help fund Vincent's expenses.

"Dolittle" hits theaters on January 17.

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