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Javicia Leslie Becomes the First Black Actor to Play Batwoman

Javicia Leslie Becomes the First Black Actor to Play Batwoman

She will succeed Ruby Rose.

Javicia Leslie has been cast as the first Black actor to play Batwoman.

She will star as a new character, Ryan Wilder, taking over from Ruby Rose, who left after only one season of playing Kate Kane.

“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,” she said in a statement.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, when Rose was cast, Batwoman became “the first first scripted live-action TV series to feature a lesbian superhero at the top of the call sheet,” and showrunner Caroline Dries and executive producer Greg Berlanti didn’t then want a straight actor to take over the character.

Leslie’s Ryan Wilder is described as a highly skilled fighter who’s “likable, messy, a little goofy and untamed.” She’s also “an out lesbian. Athletic. Raw. Passionate. Fallible. And very much not your stereotypical All-American hero.”

Ruby Rose

In May, Rose announced she was leaving the series, explaining in a statement: “I have made the very difficult decision to not return to Batwoman next season.”