The CW has unveiled Javicia Leslie as the new Batwoman.
The CW is the flagbearer for DC shows right now and has done it once again with its popular 2019 superhero crime drama Batwoman, helmed by Caroline Dries. The series has been revolutionary in terms of its LGBT representation, having consciously cast a woman from the community in the titular character.
- The stylish and ambitious – Batwoman
- Rose’s sudden departure from the series
- The new Batwoman turns out to be Javicia Leslie
Since its launch, the show has gained popularity amongst audience and received decent reviews from the critics. Season 1 saw Ruby Rose take on the role of Kate Kane a.k.a. Batwoman. However, now that she has left the show, the makers have brought a new actress on board – Javicia Leslie.
Batwoman – The stylish and ambitious female superhero
The CW announced in 2018 that it would be including the character of Batwoman in its 2018 Arrowverse crossover event, Elseworlds. Soon after, show-runner Dries started developing a script for the character of Batwoman and brought a strong pilot to The CW which was eventually approved. Hence, the series was created. Batwoman in its first season saw Kate Kane, a cousin of Bruce Wayne’s (Batman), coming to Gotham City three years after his disappearance to protect the city against evil villains.
Ruby Rose was cast as Kate Kane/Batwoman with the intent of having a lesbian actress playing the character in August 2018. But this did not go down well with the mass.
The CW and Rose received excessive backlash and criticism for casting her as Batwoman since the 2006 comic book series showed the character as a homosexual Jewish woman, which Rose was not. Also, Rose being gender fluid was condemned by fans as they thought that she wasn’t “lesbian enough”.
However, after the series started airing, viewers warmed up to her as their Batwoman and the show became popular for its action sequences, stylish visuals, feminist approach and performances.
Rose’s sudden departure from the series
In May 2020, Rose revealed that she would be quitting the show. She stated, “I have made the very difficult decision to not return to Batwoman next season. This was not a decision I made lightly as I have the utmost respect for the cast, crew and everyone involved with the show in both Vancouver and in Los Angeles.
I am beyond appreciative to Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter and Caroline Dries for not only giving me this incredible opportunity, but for welcoming me into the DC universe they have so beautifully created. Thank you Peter Roth and Mark Pedowitz and the teams at Warner Bros. and The CW who put so much into the show and always believed in me. Thank you to everyone who made season one a success – I am truly grateful.”
Berlanti Prods. and WBTV together released a statement confirming Rose’ departure saying, “Warner Bros. Television, The CW and Berlanti Productions thank Ruby for her contributions to the success of our first season and wish her all the best,” the two companies said. “The studio and network are firmly committed to Batwoman’s second season and long-term future, and we — along with the show’s talented creative team — look forward to sharing its new direction, including the casting of a new lead actress and member of the LGBTQ community, in the coming months.”
This came as quite a shock to fans who couldn’t understand the reason behind her exit from the show. Initial rumours suggesting that Rose could not adjust to shooting for long hours in Vancouver were shot down by her as she warned her fans not to believe everything they read.
Javicia Leslie – The new Batwoman in Gotham City
On July 8, 2020 it was reported that bisexual actress Javicia Leslie had been tapped in to play the new Batwoman. But the character Leslie would be playing will not be of Kate Kane but of Ryan Wilder, as the makers were convinced that replacing her in the same character would be a hard pill to swallow for the fans. Dries explained, “To be honest with you, I did consider the ‘soap opera version’ [of recasting] for a hot minute, because selfishly we already had a couple episodes written, and transition-wise it would be seamless. But upon further reflection — and I think [Arrowverse EP] Greg [Berlanti] helped me make this call — he’s like, ‘I think we should just reboot Batwoman as a different character’.”
Ruby Rose took to Instagram to congratulate Leslie on bagging the role.
Leslie has gone on record to express her gratitude saying, “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.”
Are you convinced by the casting? Do you think season 2 would be as successful as season one with the Leslie as Batwoman? Write to us in the comments section below. Also take out time to play a fun quiz on Batman.