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'Batgirl' casts first trans character in DC film

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The first ever trans actor to star in a DC film has been cast.

  • READ MORE: Every DC Extended Universe movie – ranked!

Ivory Aquino, known for her TV roles in Tales Of The City and When We Rise, has been cast as Alysia Yeoh in HBO Max‘s forthcoming feature film Batgirl. Yeoh is the best friend of the titular superhero, aka Barbara Gordon, portrayed by Leslie Grace.

Both Aquino and Yeoh are transgender, which marks the first time that a live action film adaptation of a DC Comics title will feature an openly trans character. Yeoh’s character was debuted in a 2011 issue of Batgirl written by Gail Simone and penciled by Ardian Syaf.

Variety reports that Aquino’s casting has now been confirmed after the news leaked earlier this month. Grace posted a photo seemingly from the set of the film to her Instagram story and tagged Aquino in it with the caption “Barbara and Alysia ??”.

Leslie Grace (l) and Corey Hawkins (r) in 'In The Heights'
Leslie Grace (l) and Corey Hawkins (r) in ‘In The Heights’ (2021). CREDIT: Moviestore Collection Ltd / Alamy Stock Photo

The CW series Supergirl, which premiered in 2015, was the first production to have a trans superhero on TV (the Dreamer, played by Nicole Maines).

Batgirl will see J.K. Simmons (Barbara’s father, Gotham City police commissioner Jim Gordon), Brendan Fraser (unspecified main villain), Michael Keaton (reprising his role as Bruce Wayne/Batman) and Jacob Scipio (unknown role) join Aquino and Grace in the film.

The Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah-directed movie is expected to release this year, although no date has been set. Javicia Leslie as Ryan Wilder / Batwoman

In other DC news, The Batman theme has been unveiled by composer Michael Giacchino – you can listen to the track here.

As teased in the trailers, the theme is both sombre and soaring, with soft orchestral stabs building to a triumphant finale.

Giacchino has frequently collaborated with The Batman director Matt Reeves, scoring the end credits on 2008’s Cloverfield, along with tracks for films Let Me InDawn Of The Planet Of The Apes and War For Planet Of The Apes.

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