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Javicia Leslie takes over as CW's 'Batwoman'

Leslie takes over for Ruby Rose, who surprised fans by leaving the role after one season.

The CW has tapped Javicia Leslie to take over the title role of "Batwoman" for its second season, the network announced Wednesday. She replaces Ruby Rose, who unexpectedly announced she was leaving the show in May.

Rather than taking over Rose's role of Kate Kane, Leslie will play Ryan Wilder, a former drug-runner with deadly fighting skills who lives in a van with her plant, according to Variety. She's also an out lesbian.

"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," said Leslie, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

“I’m inventing a whole new character who in her past was inspired by Batwoman, so she will take on the mantle and is completely maybe not the right person at the time to be doing it, so that’s what makes it fun,” show developer Caroline Dries said, according to Deadline.

The second season of "Batwoman" is set to premiere in January.

Leslie's previous roles include "God Friended Me," "The Family Business" and "Always a Bridesmaid."

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RELATED: Movie-related merchandise still hit stores despite film delays

Other actors who have been replaced in hero, fantasy roles

  • Bruce Wayne. "Batman": The 1989 version and its sequel starred Michael Keaton. He was replaced in two subsequent films by Val Kilmer and George Clooney, respectively. These films were considered to be in the same storyline since other characters including Alfred Pennyworth were played by the same actors.
  • James Rhodes, "Iron Man": Terrence Howard played Tony Stark's best friend in the first film, but was replaced by Don Cheadle for the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe films.
  • Bruce Banner, "Avengers": Edward Norton played Banner in "The Incredible Hulk" but was replaced by Mark Ruffalo for the "Avengers" films and "Thor: Ragnarok." Eric Bana played Banner before Norton, but that was before Marvel reacquired the movie rights to the character.
  • Doctor Who: Thirteen actors have played the role, which is easy to write into the storyline as The Doctor can regenerate his or her body.
  • Rachel Dawes, "Batman: Dark Knight" movies: Katie Holmes played the role of Bruce Wayne's love interest/assistant district attorney in "Batman Begins." She was replaced by Maggie Gyllenhaal in "The Dark Knight"
  • Victoria, "Twilight": Rachel Lefevre played the vengeful, redheaded vampire in the first two movies, but was replaced by Bryce Dallas Howard in the third.
  • Dumbledore, "Harry Potter": Richard Harris played the Hogwarts headmaster in the first two movies. After Harris died, he was replaced by Michael Gambon.