Gotham star Camren Bicondova surprised fans today by revealing that her final scene as Selina Kyle has already aired, and she will not appear in the upcoming series finale as Catwoman. That is not to say that Catwoman will not appear in the finale, which jumps forward several years and gives fans a glimpse of the Gotham City that everything has been building toward for the last five years. Rather, the character of Catwoman will be played by actress Lili Simmons, whom Bicondova says she consulted with after deciding that she would not play the adult version of Selina.
"I have important news to share, and I ask that you continue reading with open minds and understanding hearts," Bicondova said in a statement released on her Twitter account. "April 18th's episode, 511, was my last appearance as Selina Kyle in Gotham. It's important to me that I'm the one to tell you this becuase it was a choice that I made, through a lot of thoughts, prayer, and time (which Warner Bros., FOX, and our internal production team respected). I wanted to give (the character) Selina Kyle as much respect as possible. Some will say that giving her respect would include seeing the character through to the end of the show, which I understand. But, I firmly believe that part of leaving a legacy and being part of a legacy means knowing when to pass the torch to someone else. I was blessed to be the vessel for Selina Kyle for her formative teen years, and it only felt right to give someone else the torch for her adult self. The woman who will be playing the older Selina Kyle is the glorious Lili Simmons, who, when I met for the first time, made me cry tears of joy. She is perfect for this role, and she really wanted to do Selina right. We spoke about Selina Kyle for hours; I shared journal entries and scenes that were prime examples of Selina's characteristics, and she shared thoughts of backstory for the 10 years that the audience doesn't see." You can get a first look at Simmons's Selina below, via EW.
"I want to clearly express how much thought and care went into this decision, as well as how much respect for the character and legacy of Selina Kyle there is within it," Bicondova added. "I was blessed to be the seventh female actor to play Selina Kyle, the first to play her in Gotham's adaptation — and now, there will be an eighth woman part of DC Comics' Catwoman legacy. That makes me proud. Thank you to Warner Bros., and FOX for five years of life on a beautiful, unique, television show. Thank you to Bruno Heller, Danny Cannon, and John Stephens for believing in me. Bruno and Danny, you saw something in that 14 year old girl that she didn't see in herself, and I thank you for believing in planting a seed and being patient enough to watch it flourish. John, you always made sure I knew you were just a phone-call away, and never once made me feel crazy for the suggestions or questions I had, and for that, I am thankful. Playing Selina Kyle has taught me so much about myself and what it really means to stand firm and win life. Thank you all for trusting me with her fragile indomitability, her witty comebacks, her ardent fight scenes, and her tasteful style — I've never held the opportunity lightly."
She also had a message for the audience, saying that in the same way Selina helped her find herself over the course of the series, she hoped that the character — and she — could do a little bit of the same for fans.
"To those who are reading this who are struggling with the internal war between the brain and the heart, the young people who struggle with deciding what the "right" or "wrong" thing is, whether to do the logical job or the passionate job…follow your heart, not your brain. You hear speaks what your spirit wants, your brain speaks what you're flesh wants. Doing what your heart wants won't be the easiest decisions, though. they'll be the most terrifying, they could be humiliating, but they will be worth it. Even if people tell you that you'll regret it — if it comes from your heart, there's no way you could," Bicondova wrote. "If I could give you some of what Selina has taught me, it'd be this: Stand firm, and you will win life. Be bold, be loving, be trustworthy, keep a healthy distance, and look darkness in the face and say, 'You can't keep me down.' You're meant to fly, so surround yourself with those who can. No bird ever learned how to fly from a lizard. (But, don't be stubborn about taking a rest on the ground sometimes, because you can learn something from everyone.) Here's go Gotham's teen adaptation of Selina Kyle (2014-2019), Lili Simmons, and the many more women to be blessed with the Catwoman Legacy."
You can see the official synopsis for Thursday's series finale here: "The series flash-forwards 10 years into the future, as Bruce is set to return to Gotham for the opening of the new Wayne Tower. A series of crimes leads Gordon to believe Penguin and The Riddler are up to their old tricks. However, when Bullock is framed for a murder, Gordon begins to piece together an even more sinister plot targeting the city, and a new figure emerges from the shadows to be the hero Gotham desperately needs in the all-new 'The Beginning…' series finale episode of Gotham."
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