Fans wonder about Leslie Grace’s ethnicity and race after ‘In the Heights’ actress gets cast as the new Barbara Gordon in HBO Max’s upcoming Batgirl film.

DC fans have some big news to process!

According to Deadline, Warner Bros studio and DC Films have cast actress Leslie Grace as DC’s next Batgirl.

The star’s most recent role was in the 2021 film In The Heights.

Since the news broke, Twitter has been abuzz with chatter as DC fans rushed to the platform to express what they felt about the casting decision. Many even became interested in knowing more about the actress.

Photo by Roy Rochlin/WireImage,

Actress’ ethnicity explored

  • Leslie is Afro-Latina, more specifically she is Dominican-American.

She was born to Dominican parents who lived in New York’s, The Bronx. Despite being born in the city, the (future) Batgirl was raised in Davie, Florida.

Since her school days, Leslie participated in musicals and talent shows, which explains her decision to pursue a career in the entertainment industry.

The 26-year-old actress grew up with five older siblings. Thanks to her Latino heritage Grace is multilingual. She speaks both English and Spanish.

Her mother reportedly currently runs a hair salon in Florida.

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A look at her casting in Batgirl and other roles

Although the news about the actress’ casting in DC’s Batgirl is spreading around town, it is yet to be confirmed both by her and the Warner Bros studio.

However, Deadline reveals that the Batgirl film will stream on HBO’s streaming service, HBO Max. It will mark one of the first major DC films to to debut on the streaming platform exclusively.

Bad Boys for Life fame directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah will direct the film. The script will be written by Birds of Prey screenwriter Christina Hodson.

Other actresses being tested for the role were Zoey Deutch, Isabella Merced and Haley Lu Richardson.

Some of Leslie’s other acting credits include playing Nina Rosario in Jon M. Chu’s movie adaptation of In the Heights. The film is based on Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Award-winning musical.

The star has made a mark in her music career with songs like Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow that topped the Billboard charts and winning her Latin music’s Grammy awards nominations.

Twitter reacts to the news

DC fans on Twitter received the news with mixed emotions. On one hand many were thrilled to see black casting in the DC universe. However, others believed that Leslie wasn’t suited for the role.

Replying to the news one fan wrote, “Leslie Grace could have played a black character like Vixen which fits her age and looks better. We don’t need lazy, hand-me-down tokenisations when DC has black characters they could have used.”

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