Leslie Grace Hopes Playing Batgirl ‘Validates the Dreams of Other People Who Look Like Me’

·2 min read

Leslie Grace is revealing how she found out that she’d been cast as Barbara Gordon in “Batgirl,” the upcoming HBO Max superhero film. The “In the Heights” star was asked by the filmmakers to jump on a last-minute Zoom for a final casting test before being directed to read the text of an email they had just sent her.

“I open it and it says, ‘I’m Batgirl’… and my brain broke,” Grace told me at the MTV VMAs on Sunday at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

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She said, “It was an incredible moment. When I mean incredible, I mean the textbook definition of, I could not believe it. My brain actually broke when I got the news.”

Grace immediately got to work by reading as many comics as she could. “That was my first question—what do I read?” she said, adding, “I’m like, ‘Send me everything I need to learn.’ I just bought every comic and just starting asking so many questions.”

No surprise, but she can’t reveal the film’s storylines or if any of her Batman counterparts like Robert Pattinson and Ben Affleck will be popping up in her movie. “But I will tell you this, Batgirl is a badass” she said. “She’s definitely going to be fighting lots of people. She’ll be very hands-on. She’s got a lot to prove.”

Grace hopes young fans will be inspired by a Latina Batgirl and that her work “validates the dreams of other people who look like me, who may feel it’s not an opportunity for them.

“I’m just really excited about every young girl who is going to see a Dominican Batichica and say, ‘I can do that,’” she said. “I can’t wait.”

It was announced in July that Grace had won the coveted title role. “Bad Boys for Life” duo Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah are set to direct from a script by Christina Hodson. Filming is expected to begin in November.

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