Javicia Leslie becomes first black actress to play Batwoman, Ruby Rose congratulates her successor
Javicia Leslie is The CW's new Batwoman. The actress will be the first black woman to play the character on television. Her casting into the Arroweverse comes as a major step towards diversity and representation.
In a statement, Leslie said, “I am extremely proud to be the first Black actress to play the iconic role of Batwoman on television, and as a bisexual woman, I am honoured to join this groundbreaking show which has been such a trailblazer for the LGBTQ+ community.”
Former Batwoman Ruby Rose congratulated Javicia. "OMG! This is amazing! I am so glad Batwoman will be played by an amazing Black woman. I want to congratulate Javicia Leslie on taking over the bat cape. You are walking into an amazing cast and crew. I can't wait to watch season 2 you are going to be amazing!" she wrote on Instagram.
Rose, who was the first gay live-action superhero on TV, exited the series in May, in an announcement that shocked fans. Reports cited that the Australian actor was not happy with the long hours required on the show, which led to some friction on the sets.
Taking up the mantle from Ruby Rose, Javicia's will play an entirely new character. Warner Bros Television shared a synopsis of Batwoman that reads, “Ryan Wilder is about to become Batwoman. She’s likable, messy, a little goofy and untamed. She’s also nothing like Kate Kane, the woman who wore the Batsuit before her. With no one in her life to keep her on track, Ryan spent years as a drug-runner, dodging the GCPD and masking her pain with bad habits. Today Ryan lives in her van with her plant. A girl who would steal milk for an alley cat and could also kill you with her bare hands, Ryan is the most dangerous type of fighter: highly skilled and wildly undisciplined. An out lesbian. Athletic. Raw. Passionate. Fallible. And very much not your stereotypical all-American hero.”
Batwoman premiered on The CW last October, but its first season was cut short due to the coronavirus pandemic. The series was renewed for a second season in January.