The actress takes over as Gotham's caped crusader from former star Ruby Rose.
Leslie takes over the mantle as Gotham's Scarlet Knight from Ruby Rose in the upcoming season, and on Monday, The CW released the first two photos of the fully redesigned suit and look, complete with a new curly-haired red ombre look.
The actress, who will be introduced as Ryan Wilder in the season 2 premiere, will debut the new Batwoman suit in the third episode after donning Kate Kane’s suit at the start of the season before she redesigns it after settling into her role as the city's protector.
“I love the fact that Ryan is becoming her own Batwoman -- it’s her style, her swag, and her moment! It was an honor to be able to collaborate with Caroline and Maya," Leslie said. "I felt it was important that viewers could tell by the silhouette that Batwoman was a Black girl. With the form-fitting suit and beautiful Afro, we definitely nailed it!”
Batwoman costume designer Maya Mani conceptualized the new suit, which was created by Ocean Drive Leather. The wig was created by Janice Workman, with makeup by Cory Roberts. The two most notable changes are of the cowl, featuring natural, curly hair with red streaks, red gauntlets over the forearms and shorter boots, as well as a redesign with new materials, featuring laser etching to create visual depth and a stronger silhouette.
See the official photos of Leslie as Batwoman below.
“Ryan’s journey starts from a place of ‘What can this Batsuit do for me?’ But it’s not long before she realizes the power of its symbol and what it can do for everyone else in Gotham City. As Ryan embraces everything that makes her special, she adjusts the suit to fit her physically and figuratively. This meant creating a new body design and new cowl that was undeniably a statement that screamed ‘powerful,'" showrunner Caroline Dries said in a statement. "Maya Mani sent me her drawings and I loved it. The wig was something we never perfected in season 1, and Janice Workman crushed it with this new take. Javicia and I saw various prototypes of styles and red ombres, and at one point we were trading our own iPad-doodled versions. Janice translated that into what we are looking at now. When I see it, I smile. It makes me feel inspired.”
“I was asked by Caroline Dries to design a Batsuit that was unique to the character of Ryan Wilder; as she is a highly skilled fighter, encapsulating her raw, athletic, and passionate nature was imperative. As Batwoman, Javicia Leslie not only brings a fresh perspective, but physical strength to the role. It was important for the new suit to define Javicia’s commanding presence while showcasing her athleticism and allowing her the freedom to express the physical nature of Batwoman, all while looking ultra-cool in the process!"
In September, Leslie shared a sneak peek of the new Batwoman cowl, but wearing Rose's fiery red wig. "Look out, Gotham, I'm suited up and ready to go..." she captioned the BTS shot, teasing at the time that her hair will change.
That came several weeks after Leslie shared during a virtual DC FanDome panel in September that she had yet to try on the Batwoman suit, but will do so "very soon."
"Caroline and I were also talking about how important it is that, if we're going to have a Black Batwoman, that she needs to become a 'sistah' when she becomes Batwoman. It's important for her to feel the silhouette, for her to still look like that -- more of a natural textured hair and things like that," Leslie said then. "We're still putting things together. I can't wait. I actually have no idea [what it's going to look like]. I just keep sending her fan art, like, 'Oh my gosh look at this, this is really dope!'"
Leslie is the first Black actress to play Batwoman in a live-action TV series or film.
Batwoman season 2 premieres in 2021 on The CW.
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