The character will make her first appearance as part of The CW’s annual DC Arrowverse crossover event in December. Rose also is set to play the role in the Batwoman series the CW has in development for next season. While the project is still in the script stage, with a star of Rose’s caliber attached and DC Universe architect Greg Berlanti behind it, it is likely to go to pilot and series. (I hear the CW is not planning to use the crossover as a backdoor pilot for Batwoman but instead film a full-length pilot as it did with flagship The Flash.)
One of the draws for Orange Is the New Black alumna Rose to return to the small screen likely was the opportunity to break new ground. If the project goes to series, Batwoman will become the first gay lead character — male or female — of a live-action superhero series. Batwoman already has been a trailblazer for LGBTQ+ representation in comics. After a long hiatus, she was reintroduced to the DC comic universe in 2006 when she was established as a Jewish lesbian, becoming the first-ever lesbian superhero title DC character.
In the CW’s Batwoman, written by Caroline Dries based on the DC characters, armed with a passion for social justice and a flair for speaking her mind, Kate Kane (Rose) soars onto the streets of Gotham as Batwoman, an out lesbian and highly trained street fighter primed to snuff out the failing city’s criminal resurgence. But don’t call her a hero yet. In a city desperate for a savior, Kate must overcome her own demons before embracing the call to be Gotham’s symbol of hope.
Rose, who came out as a lesbian at age 12, has identified herself as genderfluid. In 2015, she wrote, produced, and starred in the short film Break Free, a tribute to gender fluidity, which became a viral hit, garnering more than 25 million views on YouTube. Rose was awarded with the Stephen F. Kolzak Award at the 2016 GLAAD Media Awards, which is presented to an LGBT media professional who has made a significant difference in promoting equality and acceptance. She posted an emotional note after the casting was announced, calling it “a childhood dream.” (you can see it below)
Batwoman comes from Berlanti Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television where the company is based. Dries executive produces alongside Berlanti Prods.’ Berlanti and Sarah Schechter as well as former DC Entertainment president Geoff Johns via his new Mad Ghost Productions banner. Johns also has been producing the long-gestating Batgirl DC feature at Warner Bros., which switched writers this past spring.
The character Batwoman began appearing in DC Comics stories beginning with Detective Comics #233 in 1956, in which she was introduced as a love interest for Batman. On TV, Batwoman first appeared in animated series Batman: The Brave and the Bold, which premiered on Cartoon Network in 2008. On film, Batwoman appeared in Batman: Mystery of the Batwoman, voiced by Kyra Sedgwick, a 2002 direct-to-video animated film based on animated series The New Batman Adventures. Batwoman also made a cameo in direct-to-video superhero film Batman vs. Robin and appeared in 2016’s Batman: Bad Blood, voiced by Yvonne Strahovski.
Following her breakout role as Stella Carlin on Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black, Rose made the transition to features with major roles in Vin Diesel’s XXX: The Return of Xander Cage, Resident Evil; Final Chapter, John Wick: Chapter Two, and Pitch Perfect 3. She next stars in the Warner Bros. action film The Meg, which opens this weekend. She is repped by UTA, Art2Perform, and attorney Howard Fishman.
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The Bat is out of the bag and I am beyond thrilled and honored. I’m also an emotional wreck.. because this is a childhood dream. This is something I would have died to have seen on TV when I was a young member of the LGBT community who never felt represented on tv and felt alone and different. Thank you everyone. Thank you god.