As if Professor X harnessed Cerebro to find a long-lost mutant, Fox used a wide search and finally found their lead actress to take on the role of Danielle Moonstar AKA Mirage in the upcoming X-Men spinoff film, X-Men: The New Mutants. As first reported by THR's Heat Vision, newcomer Blu Hunt has been chosen to portray the Cheyenne telepath, after searches were held in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and other countries. Mirage was a difficult role to fill because the producers and studio wanted to make ethnic authenticity of great importance for each of the major roles.
Hunt can be seen currently throughout Season 4 of The CW series The Originals, as a Native American witch named The Hollow. The part-Native American actress will round out a cast of upcoming young actors that includes Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch, Split), who will play Illyana Rasputin, aka Magik; Charlie Heaton (Stranger Things) as Sam Guthrie, aka Cannonball; Henry Zaga (13 Reasons Why) as Roberto da Costa, aka Sunspot; and Maisie Williams (Game of Thrones) as Rahne Sinclair, aka Wolfsbane. Rosario Dawson is rumored to be in negotiations to play Dr. Cecilia Reyes. Shooting begins this summer, and The Fault in Our Stars director Josh Boone is writing the screenplay and will be at the helm.
Mirage will play a major role in the film, as Boone reportedly plans to use the popular story “Demon Bear,” which ran in the New Mutants #18-20 as the foundation of his screenplay. Mirage’s mutant power give her the psychic ability to create illusions of her opponents’ fears or wishes. “Demon Bear” is the “Dark Phoenix Saga” of the New Mutants, if you will, transitioning the X-Men spinoff title into a more mature tone, even using the tagline “Don’t Call ‘em X-Babies anymore” throughout the promotion of the story.
If the film captures the tone of this story, it could be more in the vein of Logan or the FX series Legion, instead of the standard X-Men film fare. When they've departed from the formula, Fox has produced original and distinct work, like the aforementioned projects, along with Deadpool.
“Demon Bear” was written by Chris Claremont and launched artist Bill Sienkiewicz to the center stage of Marvel Comics' mutant corner in 1984-1985. In it, the villain known as Demon Bear haunts Danielle Moonstar, who sees her parents being killed in her dreams. When they disappear on a hunting trip soon after, she assumes that through her mutant power she may have caused their deaths. As the New Mutants learn to deal with their powers, they must learn to trust each other in order to help keep each other safe. To this day, it is a seminal work among longtime readers of the X-Men family of books, and a brave period of risk-taking in Marvel's publishing history.