LOS ANGELES - He is already Hollywood’s highest-paid actor. Now Robert Downey Junior is increasing his Tinseltown heft by branching out into production as well as a serious dramatic role, in his latest movie.

In “The Judge” — which contains parallels with the “Iron Man” actor’s own redemption of recent years — he plays a lawyer who returns to his home town to bury his mother, only to find himself in confrontation with his father.

Attorney Hank Palmer’s relations with his dad, a well-respected conservative judge in a small town (played 83-year-old Robert Duvall), have been frosty for years, and don’t improve despite the family reunion. Duvall’s character Joseph Palmer is “a grounded rock of a man,” while Downey Jr’s “is this boxer that’s dancing like a butterfly around him trying to get his attention, his acceptance,” said director and co-producer David Dobkin. “He’s refusing to give it and is judging him the whole time,” he told journalists ahead of the movie’s release this coming Friday.