Did anyone else other than me completely miss that Warner Bros has been working on a Batgirl movie? I knew there was one in development a while ago that Joss Whedon was involved in, but I’d completely lost track of it after his departure and the project was reportedly put on the studio’s backburner. Warners has been making moves to bring it to HBO Max, though, and today Deadline reports that In The Heights actress Leslie Grace has been cast in the lead role of Barbara Gordon, aka the titular Batgirl.
Grace becomes the fifth actress to portray Barbara Gordon in live-action, the first Afro-Latina actress to do so, and the first to bring her to a feature film. Babs was originally played on the late ’60s Batman TV series by Yvonne Craig, and in the early ’00s on the WB Birds of Prey series by Dinah Meyer. A younger version of Babs played by Jeté Laurence appeared on Gotham during its final season. Barbara is also slated to appear on the upcoming third season of the HBO Max Titans series, where she’ll be played by Savannah Welch.
(No, Batman & Robin‘s Alicia Silverstone doesn’t count — while she may have played Batgirl on the Big Screen, her secret identity was Alfred’s niece, Barbara Wilson, not Barbara Gordon.)
While Grace is the first actress of color to portray Barbara Gordon in live-action, it will not be the first time that the character has been played by a person of color in any media. While Babs has appeared in animation numerous times over the years, 2017’s The LEGO Batman Movie featured Rosario Dawson as newly-appointed GCPD Commissioner Barbara Gordon, and later as Batgirl.
The duo of Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah will direct the film, with Christina Hodson penning the script. No release date has yet been set for the film, which will debut on HBO Max.
The IN THE HEIGHTS actress will play Barbara Gordon in the upcoming HBO Max film.
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