And another Filipina is making history (or herstory, rather)! As reported by Manila Bulletin, Filipina American actress Ivory Aquino has been cast as the first trans character in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU).
Aquino is set to portray Alysia Yeoh in the upcoming DC Film and streaming platform HBO Max project, “Batgirl.” Who is Alysia Yeoh, you may be wondering? In the DC comics, Yeoh is the best friend of Barbara Gordon, Batgirl’s alter ego. Yeoh worked as a bartender and is known to be a transgender woman.
Aquino will be working alongside Leslie Grace, who portrays the titular character, as well as veteran actors Brendan Fraser and Michael Keaton. Leslie Grace recently made her Hollywood debut in Lin Manuel Miranda’s “In The Heights.” Fraser is going to portray the villain Firefly. Interestingly, Keaton will be donning his bat suit once again for the project. The last time he was Batman was way back in 1992. However, fans can expect the movie to focus on Grace and her journey.
In case her surname rings a bell, according to DC comics lore, Barbara Gordon is the daughter of Commissioner James Gordon. Yes, THE commissioner Gordon that worked with the caped crusader a lot. We’ll see Barbara’s transition to becoming the titular superhero in the movie.
“Batgirl” isn’t Aquino’s first acting gig in Hollywood. She was previously seen in several movies and series such as “When We Rise” (2017), “FBI: Most Wanted” (2020), and Filipino trans filmmaker Isabel Sandoval’s “Lingua Franca.”
Coincidentally, Aquino posted about a fan cast imagining her to play Yeoh way back in 2018. It looked like she manifested this role to life, as the world will soon see Aquino play Batgirl’s best friend soon enough. Just how instrumental will Aquino’s character be in the upcoming film? We’ll have to wait and see.
The upcoming “Batgirl” movie will be directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, while it is penned by Christina Hodson. While there is no official release date yet, we can expect “Batgirl” to stream exclusively on HBO Max within the year.
The thing is that many contents from HBO Max aren’t available in HBO GO, the content-on-demand platform present in the country. However, given that Filipinos might be interested in supporting Aquino in her DCEU debut, you shouldn’t count out Batgirl’s availability just yet.
Art Daniella Sison