Samuel L. Jackson was preparing for new John Singleton film before his death

Samuel L. Jackson hasn't named the film in question.

Samuel L. Jackson is searching for a new director to step in for his late friend John Singleton on what was supposed to be their third film collaboration.

The Captain Marvel star reveals he and his Shaft and Black Snake Moan director had just started working on plans for a new project when Singleton died following a stroke in late April.

"John and I were really good friends, we talked," Jackson shared on U.S. breakfast show Today.

"We were actually about to do a film together this fall (autumn), so we were sort of in pre-production and getting ready to start that whole process..."

Jackson hasn't named the movie in question, but admits it will be tough to find someone to fill Singleton's shoes.

He continued, "The film's still gonna happen. Now we gotta find a director. It's kinda hard to find somebody who's got John's sensibility, but we'll do what we can and work that out."

The acting legend was among those invited to eulogise his old friend at his Los Angeles funeral, and Jackson was touched by the honour.

"I happened to be out of the country when he passed, but I was fortunate enough to be back to speak at his memorial service in L.A. the other week, so it was great," he said.

Meanwhile, Jackson also recalled his time working with Singleton on the Shaft revamp back in 2000, admitting he questioned the writer/director's judgement when he was urged to utter a quirky catchphrase in character, which has since become one of his most quotable lines among fans.

"There is a group of - especially now that Shaft's coming back out - 'It's my duty to please that booty' people, which I thought was the corniest line I had ever heard in my life when John said, 'It's gonna be so cool!'" Jackson remembered. "I was like, (sceptical)..."

However, when Today show co-host Craig Melvin claimed Singleton was "right" about the catchy phrase, Jackson indicated he still didn't agree, responding, "Really?!"

Jackson has since reprised the role of private investigator John Shaft II for the new instalment of the movie franchise, also titled Shaft, which was directed by Tim Story.

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