Javicia Leslie will take over as “Batwoman” during season 2 of the CW series and the importance of her role isn’t lost on the 33-year-old actress…
Growing up as a kid, Javicia Leslie was a huge Batman fan and thanks to the classic 1966 televisions series starring Adam West, she found her own representation with Eartha Kitt playing Catwoman.
Now years later, Leslie will take on a role that could have a similar impact with generations to come as she steps into the cape and cowl as the first ever black Batwoman after replacing Ruby Rose on the popular CW series heading into season 2.
Considering the impact Kitt had on her own upbringing as a young Batman fan, Leslie understands the significance of her casting and the potential influence she will have in her new role as Batwoman.
“This really had nothing to do with me and everything to do with my people and with little Black girls,” Leslie said about her casting when speaking to The Hollywood Reporter.
Leslie initially auditioned for the job during Zoom meetings thanks to the coronavirus pandemic as “Batwoman” sought to cast a new lead actress after Rose decided she did not want to return for season 2 and parted ways with the series. Rather than just recasting the same role of Kate Kane that Rose played during season 1, producers decided to create an entirely new character named Ryan Wilder and the search began for the right actress to play her.
According to “Batwoman” showrunner Caroline Dries, it didn’t take long after hearing Leslie read for the role to know they found the right person.
“Javicia blew everyone else away,” Dries said.
While filming on “Batwoman” hasn’t started yet, Leslie is already preparing for the part as she gets into physical shape while also getting ready mentally for the stress of carrying a series on her back for the first time. Rose admitted when leaving the series that serving as the lead on a show that films more than 20 episodes per season was difficult.
From the sound of things, Leslie is definitely ready to tackle the challenge.
“I’m very active in my personal life,” Leslie said. “So being able to allow that to be my work, that’s heaven for me. I do Muay Thai. I do fitness training. I run. Anything that’s active I’m always down for, so this is going to be like playing on the playground every day.”
Of course filming on “Batwoman’ season 2 is likely just the start of a much longer journey for Leslie, especially considering the kind of commitment the CW has made to all of the previous DC inspired series on the network.
“Arrow” just ended after eight seasons. “The Flash” is headed into season 7 in 2021. “Supergirl” is preparing for season 6. By all accounts, “Batwoman” will likely stick around for far longer than just two seasons and Leslie is ready for all the show can throw at her.
“There’s not many actors that get this opportunity to play in a world that you can continue to develop and expand on for a decade,” Leslie said.”This is a great beginning to what I’m sure will be a very long journey.”
Filming on “Batwoman” is expected to begin in the coming weeks with production set to begin in Vancouver. The second season of the series will debut on the CW in 2021.