Even with The Avengers still fresh in our minds as we approach its home video release after a successful run at the box office, Phase Two of the Marvel cinematic universe is already underway. Iron Man 3 has been shooting for quite some time already, and Thor: The Dark World may begin production as early as this month, with Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Ant-Man potentially following towards the end of the year.

Just as Phase One was spearheaded and launched by Iron Man, Phase Two begins with Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark as well. Unfortunately for everyone involved, the actor has sustained an injury and production will be affected.

Disney sent us the following yesterday as an update on the status of Iron Man 3 and its star:

“Robert Downey Jr. sustained an ankle injury on the set of Iron Man 3 in Wilmington, North Carolina while performing a stunt. There will be a short delay in the production schedule while he recuperates.”

From the sounds of it, it’s likely Downey Jr. suffered a sprained ankle which would prevent him from shooting scenes that require a lot of movement – that being most of his work when not in a CGI suit flying around. Oddly enough, in chatting with Downey Jr. at Comic-Con last month, he said the following about participating in dangerous stunts himself:

“Well I don’t know. I just said while I’m physically able I’d like to leave it all on the field and I’d like there to be ten moments where people wonder how I was stupid enough to actually do that stunt. Most of all me.”

The delay will not affect the film’s early summer release date next year and we hope for a speedy and healthy recovery for Robert Downey Jr. At least it’s not a head injury like Hawkeye’s stunt man suffered during The Avengers shoot.

Iron Man 3 is directed by Shane Black based off of his and Drew Pearce’s screenplay, and stars Robert Downey Jr., Ben Kingsley, Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow, Guy Pearce, Jon Favreau, Rebecca Hall, Cobie Smulders, William Sadler, James Badge Dale and the voice of Paul Bettany.

Iron Man 3 releases May 3, 2013, Thor 2 on November 8, 2013, Captain America 2 on April 4, 2014 and Guardians of the Galaxy on August 1, 2014.

Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.