Not every Crisis in the Arrowverse was resolved last season
In a shocking move, Ruby Rose has announced that she is to leave the role of Kate Kane AKA Batwoman in The CW's eponymous hit TV series. She has played the role for a single season, and the show has been renewed for a second run already. Rather than axe the show, Warner Bros. TV has said that the role will be recast.
"I have made the very difficult decision to not return to Batwoman next season. This was not a decision I made lightly... I am beyond appreciative to Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter and Caroline Dries for not only giving me this incredible opportunity, but for welcoming me into the DC universe they have so beautifully created... Thank you to everyone who made season one a success - I am truly grateful.”
No reason for the move has been given, and while it has been denied as the cause, there's no doubt filming took its toll on Rose. Last year she underwent emergency back surgery after one or more physical stunts left her with a herniated spine. In her own words, she risked being paralysed by the terrible injury.
Much was made of Rose's casting last year, as an openly gay actress taking on the role of the first openly gay lead character in a superhero show. Producers hope to stick to this ideal with the hiring of another LGBTQ actress, though no names have yet been announced, if even thought of given the sudden turn around of this news.
The production team across the range of The CW, Warner Bros. TV and Berlanti Production have issued a single statement so far, thanking Rose for "contributions to the success" of Season 1.
"The studio and network are firmly committed to Batwoman's second season and long-term future, and we - along with the show's talented creative team - look forward to sharing its new direction, including the casting of a new lead actress and member of the LGBTQ community, in the coming months."
Batwoman ended Season 1 with only 20 of the planned 22 episodes filmed and aired, due to the pandemic. The latest aired episode served as a soft season finale, and will now be the last episode to star Rose. There is no word on whether a transistion to a new lead would have been made part of those lost episodes, or if any footage can be used to make such a transistion early in Season 2. Or, will we simply, suddenly, have a different looking Kate Kane when the show returns in January 2021 at the earliest?