Now that Iron Man is the central pillar of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and Robert Downey Jr. has made something like $600 zillion dollars on these movies (estimated), it can be easy to forget that Downey was anything but a sure thing when he was first cast in the original Iron Man.

Just a few years removed from several run-ins with the law and substance abuse issues, he had only started to earn his way back into Hollywood’s good graces in the middle 2000s. Downey had already played the lead in in the comic noir Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and had a strong supporting turn in Zodiac, but casting Downey as the lead in a huge superhero movie — and potentially as the first piece in a much bigger cinematic universe — was a still an enormous gamble. So much so that Marvel actually made Downey record a screen test for the role of Tony Stark.

That screen test is available as one of the extras on the home video version of Avengers: Endgame, which is available today on Digital HD and arrives on Blu-ray and DVD on August 13. You can watch a piece of Downey’s very first unseen performance as Tony below:

He looks so young! That’s a lot of Marvel phases ago. Can we see Chris Evans’ Captain America screen test next?

Gallery — Everything Movie and TV Series Announced For Marvel Phase Four:

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