Marvel's production executive Victoria Alonso has revealed that the studio has not yet decided how to proceed with Black Panther 2 following the death of lead star Chadwick Boseman.
The actor died at the age of 43 in August after a secret four-year battle with colon cancer and had just been starting to get in shape for the movie when his condition took a fatal turn for the worse.
None of the executives at Marvel had been aware of Boseman's condition and had been preparing the script for Black Panther 2 with him front and centre, leaving the future of the series uncertain.
"There's only one Chadwick and he's not with us," said Alonso in quotes published by The Wrap.
"Our king, unfortunately, has died in real life, not just in fiction, and we are taking a little time to see how we return to history and what we do to honour this chapter of what has happened to us that was so unexpected, so painful, so terrible, really.
"Because Chadwick was not only a wonder of a human being every day for the five years that we spent together, but it also seems to me that as a character what he did elevated us as a company, and has left his moment in history.
"I know that sometimes two months go by or three months go by in production and you say, 'well, it was a long time'. But it is not a long time.
"We have to think carefully about what we are going to do, and how, and think about how we are going to honour the franchise."
The first MCU movie to feature a black character as its primary lead, Black Panther grossed a phenomenal $1.3 billion (£1 billion) at the worldwide box office when it was released in 2018.