"Iron Man 3" Production on Hold Due to Injured Robert Downey Jr.

Actor hurt while performing a stunt during filming in North Carolina.

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Production has been suspended on "Iron Man 3" due to star Robert Downey Jr. damaging his ankle.

    He may play a superhero on film, but Robert Downey Jr. is all too human in real life.

    The 47-year-old injured his ankle while shooting a stunt on the North Carolina set of Iron Man 3, Marvel Studios said in a statement.

    The threequel will briefly halt production until the star is back on the mend.

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    "Robert Downey Jr. sustained an ankle injury on the set of Iron Man 3 in Wilmington, N.C., while performing a stunt," the studio said. "There will be a short delay in the production schedule while he recuperates."

    Expectations are running high for the eagerly anticipated sequel following the first two films' staggering global grosses, which topped out at $585 million and $623 million, respectively.

    The Shane Black-helmed flick began shooting in May with a cast that includes Gwyneth Paltrow, Ben Kingsley, Rebecca Hall and Guy Pearce, and a top-secret plot believed to be inspired by the comic book's popular Extremis storyline, in which a scientist creates a drug that grants people superhuman abilities.

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    Filmmakers set the geekverse abuzz last month by screening teaser footage at Comic-Con that answered a few questions, including speculation that Kingsley is playing criminal mastermind Mandarin. (Yep, he is.)

    Black told E! News at Comic-Con that half the film had already been shot, and that if they "don't f--k up the rest, it's going to be great." We bet!

    Iron Man 3 hits theaters on May 3, 2013.