Javicia Leslie: Here’s Why You May Recognize The New Lead of The CW’s ‘Batwoman’

Javicia Leslie will soon become a household name as the star of The CW’s Batwoman. She is taking over for Ruby Rose, who left the show. But you’ve likely seen Leslie in a number of other projects before her superhero debut.

Javicia Leslie
Javicia Leslie | Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Vivienne Hu

Javicia Leslie is the new lead of ‘Batwoman,’ replacing Ruby Rose

In May, news broke last month that Rose was leaving the show. While it was shocking information, it wasn’t all that surprising to most fans. Rose had was injured early in the show’s production, and overall, it just seemed to make sense that she possibly may not be gelling with the show. She also had a rough bout on social media, having to leave for a bit after she was bullied and harassed by fanboys when she was first cast in the role.

“I have made the very difficult decision to not return to Batwoman next season,” she said at the time. “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.”

It soon surfaced that the network would not be replacing Rose in the character of Kate Kane. Instead, it would introduce a new character, Ryan Wilder. This week, it was announced Javicia Leslie had been tapped for the new lead role, becoming the first Black actress to play Batwoman. As Leslie identifies as bisexual, It is also keeping with the show’s interest in having an LGBTQ actress play the character.

RELATED: Ruby Rose Hated the Hectic ‘Batwoman’ Schedule, Source Reveals

In a statement, Leslie said, “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.”

You likely know her from ‘God Friended Me’

Leslies’ first major role on television was in the CBS light drama series, God Friended Me. She was one of the series regular, starring alongside Brandon Micheal Hall, Violett Beane, Suraj Sharma, Joe Morton, and Erica Gimpel.

The series followed Miles Finer (Hall), a staunch atheist who receives a friend request on Facebook from “God.” The account changes his life, giving him friend suggestions for people who need his assistance in some way, shape, or form. Leslie played Miles’ sister, Ali Finer. The show, which developed a following, was canceled after two seasons on the network, running from 2018-2020.

She also had main roles in this movie and this television show

Leslie can also be seen in the BET series, Carl Weber’s The Family Business. The first season of the show aired on BET and the second season is currently airing on BET+. Based on the book series, the show follows the Duncans, “a prominent family from Jamaica, Queens” who are an “upstanding family” by day and “live a dangerous secret life” by night. In the series, she plays Paris Duncan.

The actress also played the lead role in Always a Bridesmaid, a recent BET movie written by Yvette Nicole Brown. The film also starred Leslie’s God Friended Me co-star Brandon Michael Hall, Jordan Calloway, Michelle Mitchenor, Meagan Tandy, Bernard David Jones, and more.