Following the exit of former star Ruby Rose from the series, the CW's Batwoman has found its new lead actress in Javicia Leslie. As revealed on Wednesday by Warner Bros. Television, The CW, and Berlanti Productions, Leslie will be donning the iconic cape and cowl when Batwoman returns to the network in January 2021 for the show's second season. New episodes of Batwoman will air on Sundays at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT following its premiere.
As previously reported, Ruby Rose's Kate Kane character will be written out of the series so a new character can suit up as the next Batwoman. Leslie's casting will also make history, as this will officially make her the first Black actress to portray the Batwoman character in a live-action television or movie production. "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 honored to join this groundbreaking show which has been such a trailblazer for the LGBTQ+ community," Leslie said of her history-making Batwoman casting.
In season two of the show, Leslie will play Ryan Wilder. According to the press release, Ryan is "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."
Premiering on The CW last year, Batwoman starred Ruby Rose as Kate Kane -- a cousin of Bruce Wayne who becomes the new savior of Gotham City years after Batman has oddly disappeared. After it was announced that the network had ordered a second season of Batwoman, Rose had announced her exit from the series, though she was vague regarding the exact reasons for her departure. Reportedly, Rose was unhappy with the long work hours along with living in Vancouver. The criticism over Rose's casting from some fans also probably did very little to convince her to stay. Following her exit, Batwoman producers announced they were seeking a new actress from the LGBTQ+ community to take over the lead role starting in season two.
Previously, Leslie appeared in the movie Always a Bridesmaid and starred in the CBS/Warner Bros. Television drama series God Friended Me for two seasons. She also stars in the BET drama series The Family Business alongside Ernie Hudson, Valarie Pettiford, Armand Assante, and Miguel A. Nunez Jr. That series just debuted its second season this month. You can catch her as Ryan Wilder in season two of Batwoman in January 2021 on the CW. In the meantime, season one episodes can be streamed on HBO Max.