In May of this year, Ruby Rose abruptly announced that she would be leaving her role as the title character in ‘Batwoman,’ the CW show that made history by having a lesbian protagonist. Just a week later, Rose followed up her departure with a vague statement on social media.
“It wasn’t an easy decision but those who know, know,” Rose wrote on Instagram. “I didn’t want to not acknowledge everyone involved and how big this was for TV and for our community. I have stayed silent because that’s my choice for now but know I adore you all.”
However, Rose has finally broken her silence on the specifics. In a new interview with Entertainment Weekly, she points to a culmination of internal feelings and outward healing after back surgery as the reason she decided to step away.
“Being the lead of a superhero show is tough,” Rose told EW. “Being the lead in anything is tough. But I think, in that particular instance, it was a lot more difficult because I was still recovering from my surgery.”
“I had my surgery and then 10 days later I went to work, which maybe wasn’t the best idea,” she added. “Most people take about a month or three off before they return to work, so it was definitely made more difficult by that. But as far as being a lead of a show or a film — regardless if it’s action or if it’s emotional — in whichever ways, it’s taxing.”
Rose also says that the quarantine wasn’t much help in getting her psyched to go back to work either. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, ‘Batwoman’ wasn’t able to finish a real season finale, and the extra time allowed Rose to consider what that meant for the show and for her role.
“You know, you have time in quarantine and sort of isolation to just think about a lot of different things and what you want to achieve in life and what you want to do,” Rose notes. “I think for both [me and the producers], it was a great opportunity to have a dialogue about a lot of things. I respect them so much and they’ve been so respectful to me.”
On the topic of her replacement, Rose says that she’s “proud and so happy” to see Javicia Leslie take on the role. Leslie made history with the new role, becoming the first Black actress to play the iconic superhero role.
“I’m just really stoked and I’m definitely going to watch the next season as well and see how it all comes together,” Rose told EW.