Ryan Coogler says making the 'Black Panther' sequel without Chadwick Boseman is the "hardest thing".
The 34-year-old director is working on a follow-up to the 2018 Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) film but admits that he is still trying to come to terms with the loss of lead actor Chadwick, who passed away last August aged 43 after a private cancer battle.
Ryan said: "I'm still currently going through it.
"One thing that I've learned in my short time on this Earth is that it's very difficult to have perspective on something while you're going through it. This is one of the more profound things that I've gone through in my life, having to be a part of keeping this project going without this particular person who is like the glue who held it together."
The 'Creed' filmmaker explained that he has been trying to find a "balance" between his personal and professional life since Chadwick's passing.
Ryan told the Jemele Hill is Unbothered podcast: "That said, you have a professional life, you've got a personal life. Personal life, I'm going to say when you work in something that you love, those things blend, they come together.
"I'm trying to find a work-life balance. But I'm not there yet, so this is without question the hardest thing I've had to do in my professional life."
Ryan explained that while the loss of Chadwick "stings", it has left him "incredibly motivated" that he got to spend time with the 'Ma Rainey's Black Bottom' star.
He said: "This one hurts and stings, but it's also incredibly motivating.
"I'm incredibly sad to lose him but I'm also incredibly motivated that I got to spend time with him. You spend your life hearing about people like him. For this individual, who is an ancestor now, I was there for it. It's such an incredible privilege that fills you up as much as it knocks you out."
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