At this point, I think all of us who consider ourselves comic book fans would like to see Hugh Jackman back in the adamantium claws for another stab at Wolverine.

The planned sequel, which is supposed to reboot the wayward Marvel franchise, has faced far too many obstacles in the preproduction stage, from original director Darren Aronofsky’s abrupt departure to delays caused by the tsunami that rocked Japan (where The Wolverine hoped to film). James Mangold’s on board to direct, and Christopher McQuarrie reportedly turned in a stellar script. But we’re hearing the film might be delayed. Again.

We reported back in August that Fox likely wouldn’t start production on The Wolverine until next year at this point, even though it had set up shop in Vancouver for potential shoots. But, in an “Ask Clint” column, reiterates that sources close to the production say they have been delayed and that “they’ll resume talks again next year.”

Resume talks? That doesn’t sound like they’re ready to shoot, at all. We’re dangerously close to just saying, “Pull the plug,” because Wolverine fans won’t be able to stomach another half-hearted, sloppy installment no matter how many times Jackman – a legitimate fan – appeals to the dedicated fan base. Clint confirms that the script is “stellar,” so what could the hold up be? Are they still figuring out budgets? These superhero films aren’t cheap, and X-Men: First Class only made $146.4M over the summer … down from $179.8M for 2009’s Wolverine, suggesting a decline in interest in the franchise. We’re not sure if MovieHole is just reiterating the fact that Wolverine appears to be in limbo right now, but the story doesn’t say that filming begins soon, so fans – at the very least – will have to stay patient.

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