Batgirl Star Leslie Grace Shares Her Hope for Playing DC Character

Leslie Grace, star of Batgirl, shares her hopes for playing the DC character. A solo movie centered on Batman's female counterpart has long been gestating at DC Films/Warner Bros. Joss Whedon was the first creative brought on board, but left the project altogether in 2018. Christina Hodson was subsequently hired to pen the script, who has also written the DCEU films Birds of Prey and The Flash. Batgirl then made another splash by securing Bad Boys for Life’s Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah as directors.

Then, the search for DC's Batgirl began. After narrowing the shortlist to Zoey Deutch, Isabella Merced, and Haley Lu Richardson, Leslie Grace eventually landed the highly-coveted role. Though she doesn't have many screen credits to her name, Grace recently turned heads with her performance as Nina Rosario in the musical, In the Heights. The actress is confirmed to be playing the more popular iteration of Batgirl, Barbara Gordon, who has never been portrayed before on film.

Related: All 19 DC Movies Releasing After The Suicide Squad (& When)

At the recent MTV Video Music Awards, Variety caught up with Leslie Grace, who shared her excited reaction to being cast as Batgirl and what she hopes to accomplish by playing the DC character: “I’m just really excited about every young girl who is going to see a Dominican Batichica and say, ‘I can do that,’ I can’t wait,” Grace says. She also hopes that a Latina Batgirl “validates the dreams of other people who look like [her], who may feel it’s not an opportunity for them."

Representation in superhero movies has been a hot-button topic as of late, and studios have been making strides in that area in recent years. Marvel's Black Panther seemed to bring this conversation about the importance of representation in Hollywood blockbusters to the forefront, and it has only continued with the recent release of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings which stars a predominantly Asian cast. Eternals is expected to make similar strides as well with a number of firsts for the MCU, including their first gay and deaf heroes.

DC has released female-led comic book adaptations such as Wonder Woman and Birds of Prey, and they're continuing to get in on the action by now casting a Latina Batgirl. It will also be interesting to see how the rest of the cast comes together around her. Jurnee Smollett would be an interesting inclusion, who played Black Canary in Birds of Prey, as it would also increase the film's diversity. Other than that, J.K. Simmons will likely be playing Barbara's father, Commissioner Gordon, reprising his role from Justice League. However, Leslie Grace's titular heroine should remain the center of attention as Batgirl comes together.

Next: How Batgirl's Commissioner Gordon Casting Changes Ben Affleck's Batman

Source: Variety

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