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‘X-Men’ producer ignites fan frenzy with new cast photo

Lauren Shuler Donner tweeted the new working title of the Fox TV series pilot along with a photo of the cast at a script reading.

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Frazer Harrison/Getty Images; Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Lauren Shuler Donner, a longtime producer of the X-Men movie franchise, tweeted on Friday a photo of a table read for the pilot of Fox’s untitled Marvel series. “Cast reading for ‘Gifted,'” she wrote at the time, while the image revealed The Originals star Joseph Morgan sitting among previously announced actors Stephen Moyer, Jamie Chung, and Amy Acker. While this has caused some speculation as to the series’ title and cast, here’s what EW has learned.

According to multiple sources, Morgan has not been cast in the series, which also will feature Emma Dumont, Percy Hynes White, Blair Redford, Sean Teale, and Natalie Alyn Lind. It turns out Morgan was merely filling in for the read-through. As for the title, EW has confirmed it’s not the official name for the series as of yet, but it is the current working title.

Professor Charles Xavier, played on the big screen by Patrick Stewart and James McAvoy, often referred to his students as “gifted” — it’s in the name of his Institute for Gifted Youngsters. But it also happens to be the title of the first volume to Joss Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men comic series, which tells of a “mutant cure.”

The pilot centers on Kate (Acker) and Reed Stewart (Moyer), two ordinary parents who discover their children have abilities. Forced to go on the run from the government, they team up with an underground network of mutants, led by Sam (Redford). Chung will portray the teleporting mutant Blink, while Dumont plays Polaris, the mistress of magnetism and the daughter of Magneto.

Lind also posted photos of the cast in Dallas with X-Men: Apocalypse director Bryan Singer, who’s helming and executive producing the pilot. “Watch out. X-men are coming for you Dallas,” she wrote.

Watch out. X-men are coming for you Dallas. #mutantsquad (missing the our badass muties @jamiejchung & @seanjamesteale )

A post shared by Natalie Alyn Lind (@natalynlind) on

Matt Nix (Burn Notice) wrote the pilot, in addition to executive producing with Donner, Simon Kinberg, Jeph Loeb, and Jim Chory.