“Batwoman” has a new caped crusader — Javicia Leslie.
The “God Friended Me” actress, who identifies as a bisexual, will star as The CW’s new “Batwoman” after Ruby Rose departed the series in May.
Leslie will make her debut during the show’s season two premiere, scheduled to air January 2021.
“I am extremely proud to be the first Black actress to play the iconic role of Batwoman on television,” Leslie said in a statement. “And as a bisexual woman, I am honored to join this groundbreaking show, which has been such a trailblazer for the LGBTQ+ community.”
Leslie will play a new version of the winged superhero in a reboot of the series, instead of stepping into the boots of Rose’s Kate Kane.
Leslie’s character is Ryan Wilder, “an out lesbian,” who is athletic, raw, passionate, and fallible,” according to the official character description.
Also, “She’s likable, messy, a little goofy and untamed. 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.”
Praise for casting
On Instagram, Rose applauded Leslie’s casting.
“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.
Rose’s character Kate Kane will not be killed off in season two. Her disappearance will be a mystery.
Prior to joining “Batwoman,” Leslie starred on the CBS series “God Friended Me,” which aired two seasons. That show was also produced by Warner Bros. Television and Berlanti Productions, who are “Batwoman” producers.
Leslie also starred in the BET series “The Family Business” and the film “Always a Bridesmaid.”