Barry Allen may be closer to meeting Iris West for the first time all over again.
Variety revealed yesterday that Rick Famuyiwa, new director of The Flash film adaptation for the DC Extended Universe, is seriously considering Kiersey Clemons for the film's female lead, likely to be Barry Allen's comic book love interest, Iris West.
Clemons, 22, appeared as Diggy in the 2015 film Dope, which was directed by Famuyiwa. She also recently appeared in the movie Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising, and has been in episodes of the TV series Extant, New Girl, Eye Candy, Transparent, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, and Austin & Ally.
The Flash recently replaced Seth Grahame-Smith with Famuyiwa as director, after reported "creative differences" even though the studio is keeping Smith's most recent draft of the script from a treatment by Chris Miller and Phil Lord. Ezra Miller will reprise his role of Barry Allen, following brief cameos in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice earlier this year.
Created in 1956 by Robert Kanigher and Carmine Infantino, Iris West first appeared in Showcase #4 as a reporter for Picture News, based in Central City, and the girlfriend of Barry Allen. Unaware of his secret identity as The Flash, Iris often picked on Barry for frequently being late. Eventually, she learned not only that Barry was the Scarlet Speedster, but that her nephew, Wally West, was Kid Flash. After she married Barry, she discovered her husband's secret on their wedding night when Barry talked in his sleep. During this time, the couple discovered that Iris was born in the 30th Century (circa 2945 AD), and had been sent back to the present shortly before "Earth-East" attacked "Earth-West," when Central City was a self-contained city.
After years as a prominent presence in the Flash's life and Central City, she was killed by Professor Zoom, the Reverse-Flash, during a costume party. Zoom vibrated his hand into her head, solidifying it just enough to kill her. Years later, Barry killed Zoom while trying to prevent him from murdering his new fiancée, Fiona Webb. Unknown to Barry, however, Iris' biological parents, the Russells (with the help of a future Flash, John Fox), sent the then-infant Iris to the past, where she was adopted by Ira West, her "death" caused a paradox that was resolved after the Russells placed her consciousness into a new body. Barry was reunited with Iris in her time, and they were able to spend a month together before Barry returned to the past and died during the Crisis on Infinite Earths. During their brief time together, though, they were able to conceive the Tornado Twins, Don and Dawn Allen.
In the current New 52 continuity, Iris is not married to Barry, but they still know each other because of their respective occupations. Iris showed a romantic attraction to Barry and later issues confirmed that she is in love with Barry. Barry does not yet reciprocate Iris's affections, though he hints at it when he's forced to take on the role of the Black Racer and goes to Iris for help.
If Clemons is cast as Iris West, she will be the third actress to portray the character in live-action, after Paula Marshall in the pilot for the 1990-91 Flash television series for CBS, and Candice Patton on the current Flash television series for The CW that began in 2014. The character has also appeared in a number of DC Comics animated projects, including Young Justice (voiced by Nicole Dubuc), Justice League: The New Frontier (voiced by Vicki Lewis), and Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox (voiced by Jennifer Hale).
The Flash is currently scheduled to be released in theaters on March 16, 2018.