Fall TV Preview
Erica Durance Supergirl Season 3

Supergirl Recast Shocker: Erica Durance Joins Season 3 as [Spoiler]

Supergirl fans, brace yourselves for a mother of a recast.

Erica Durance, famous for playing Lois Lane on Smallville, will take over the role of Kara’s (late) biological mother Alura Zor-El when the CW drama returns this fall, TVLine has learned. Alura, who made appearances throughout the show’s first two seasons, was originally played by Laura Benanti. (Benanti also played Alura’s twin sister Astra, who was eventually killed by Alex.)

“Unfortunately Laura, who Greg [Berlanti] and I have worked with for years going back to Eli Stone, was unable to continue in the role due to work commitments in [New York],” says executive producer Andrew Kreisberg. “But we are so blessed that Erica has come aboard to offer her own interpretation of Kara’s mother. We had tremendous success with a former Lois Lane last season with Teri Hatcher. We know Erica will continue the proud tradition of legacy actors joining our shows and creating new and exciting takes on classic DC characters.”

Update: Benanti — who gave birth to her first child on Valentine’s Day — on Friday evening weighed in on the switcheroo, tweeting, “I loved working on this show and will miss it so much! Right now it’s time for me to be supermom to my own little one in NYC.”

Of course, Durance is hardly the first legacy actor to appear on Supergirl. Laura Vandervoort (Smallville‘s Kara) recurred in Season 1 as the villainous Indigo; Dean Cain (Lois & Clark‘s Man of Steel) and Helen Slater (the star of 1984’s Supergirl) play Kara’s adoptive parents; and Hatcher, as previously mentioned in Kreisberg’s statement, appeared as Queen Rhea of Daxam in Season 2.

Your thoughts on Benanti’s exit/Durance’s arrival? Drop ’em in a comment below.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. stephon js says:

    Wow I’m shocked and happy

  2. Keni k stone says:

    Yeah just doesn’t make any sense.

  3. Pamela says:

    Wow I feel old if Erica is being cast as an adults mom.

    • Jonathan Carpenter says:

      Erica is 39, 2 years older than Laura. Her character is also dead, she’ll only be playing her in flashbacks and in hologram form.

    • johnhelvete says:

      Durance is a year older than Benanti (which I admit to being surprised by) but she is not playing an adult’s mom technically since Alura died when Kara was 13.

    • tina says:

      I am 38 and have friends who are already marrying off their kids….talk about feeling old

    • Rex the Wonder Dog says:

      Kara was 12 years old when her mother died.

      • canadian ninja says:

        …AND, to make things even more screwy, it was 30ish years ago.

        • Rex the Wonder Dog says:

          Going by the show’s timeline Kara was 13 years old when Alura died, Kara was stuck in the Phantom Zone for 24 years, and became Supergirl 11 years later, and it has been about 2 years that she has been Supergirl. So Alura had Kara 50 years ago. Also making Kara 50 years old chronologically.

  4. Zak says:

    I love this! I liked Laura a lot, but my fiancé is currently watching Smallville and just got to season 4, which I have been watching with, and Erica Durance is an amazing actress. I wonder how much we’ll see her though.

  5. feels like it’d be a major underuse of Erica’s talents.

  6. I’m disappointed to see Benanti go, but can understand if she has a Broadway show that flying to Vancouver to play the role would be quite difficult. I look forward to whatever Durance and her character add to the show this season.

  7. George says:

    I like both actresses a lot, and the reasoning for the recast seems legit but this feels like a CBS to CW move.

    • Lucy says:

      I get what you mean. CW tend to cast younger looking actresses as parents. I remember in some old teen dramas when the adults were younger than the actors that play the kids.

      However, I can’t fully judge the CW because Erica is older than Laura. Personally, I think it would be interesting if the recast is addressed in the show. Maybe she returns in the present day somehow and no one recognises her because of the new face and maybe a slightly different personality. I don’t know, just something for eagle-eyed fans to accept more with the recast. It’s not a MAJOR major recast (like a prominent recurring recent character or a main character) nor is it a minor recast (like they were a guest but now have bigger plans for the character)

      • Rex the Wonder Dog says:

        On The Golden Girls on NBC Bea Arthur was 2 years older than Estelle Getty, but Estelle played the mother of Bea’s character.

  8. DJ Doena says:


    I tried to get into Saving Hope given that it starred Lois Lane and Daniel Jackson. But I just couldn’t get into it.

    But her in my kind of show? Hell to the yeah!

  9. dansue says:

    More Krypton stuff? Blah. I did like ED on Smallville though, maybe she can give the writers tips on how to write for a reporter character because Kara as a reporter has been a dud

    • kath says:

      Couldn’t agree more. Kara as a reporter was written so badly, she deserves to go no higher than a blog.

      • dansue says:

        A blog would have been a great way to go – freedom to go Supergirling whenever, competing with catco for stories, differing her from Clark. Sigh, lost opportunities

    • Mary T says:

      This doesn’t necessarily mean more “Krypton” stuff as they have had an Alura hologram/AI for Kara to get advice from since the second episode of the series, just like Kal/Clark/Superman has the Jor’El hologram/AI that he talks to at the Fortress of Solitude.

  10. Jared says:

    Yes please! Love Erica!

  11. Cate says:

    I absolutely loved Erica Durance on Smallville – my favourite Lois Lane (sorry Teri Hatcher and Margot Kidder!) she seems too young to play Melissa Benoist’s mother, even in flashbacks. However if she is really older than Laura Benanti then I guess it’s not an issue. Maybe I just see her as young Lois from Smallville.

    Obviously she is Canadian so a local, and her show Saving Hope just ended. I think she has young children so a small part like this as opposed to the lead and a producer as she was on Saving Hope might suit her. I just hope she gets more to do than Benanti did. As Astra she was a complex villain, but Alura has mainly been a hologram! Perhaps we’ll get some Krypton flashbacks this season as the villain appears to have a Krypton connection too

  12. drhenning says:

    Now that Saving Hope is done, a great new role for Erica… Saving Hope has been a terrific medical show that had a supernatural feel to it.. It was probably time for it to end but she’ll get to stay in Canada though not the Toronto area she was in. But she’ll be comfortable in Vancouver since that’s where Smallville was filmed… Maybe she’ll be like a Jor-El type character and be fairly regular..

    • Brenda says:

      I thought Saving Hope got cancelled after a few episodes, or am I thinking of something else?

      • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

        Saving Hope ran for five seasons, airing Stateside on NBC (for a very brief spell) and then other mish-mash places.

        • Cat says:

          Still watching new episodes of Saving Hope on Ion Network on Monday nights. According to IMDB.com the show has been in production from 2012 through this year, 2017.

          • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

            Yep, ION is its latest US home. But production has wrapped, not sure how far behind ION is running.

          • Cat says:

            In my post above I made an error; it’s on Tuesday nights. We’re just coming up on Episode 13 on July 11th. Sorry to hear it has wrapped up. I hope they have another good show to replace it.

          • Kathy says:

            ION airs either the same week or the week after the Canadian showing. There are a few episodes left, but they’re definitely winding down.

          • Zoe says:

            Hulu has the show now. Looking like Hulu new home to Canadian TV?

          • KLS says:

            Zoe, not a bad thng. There are some good shows being produced up there.

    • Peggy says:

      I have recently gotten hooked on Saving Hope so it is nice to know ahead of time that the current season (showing on ION here ) is the last one. That way I won’t be watching for it to come back. I really like Erica so it will be good to see her on Supergirl.

  13. Steve F. says:

    Ooh – I like this casting! Especially as Laura Benanti recently had a baby.. also, I didn’t know that Erica’s actually a year older than her (and making me feel REALLY old as well)!

  14. tina says:

    awwwwwww. I love Laura Benanti … aka America’s Melania Trump Reserve. But understood. She probably has some broadway type things going on, plus she’s a new mom.

  15. JimC says:

    I would’ve preferred she play Lois again, as she was the best of all the Lois Lane’s but I’ll take what I can get. Glad to have her back in the DC Universe.

  16. wes chapman says:

    Excellent actress. In my opinion the best Lois. Smallvilles actors were better than the movies!!

  17. T.W.S.S. says:

    I wore my Smallville High shirt to work today. Then a “Flash Intro in Smallville Style” video popped up in my YouTube feed, which lead me to listen to Remy Zero’s “Save Me,” twice. Now this! Clearly, it’s time to rewatch some episodes.

  18. texmike says:

    Love me some Erica. The best Lois ever!

  19. Cat says:

    Does this mean she’s leaving the role of Dr. Alex Reid on “Saving Hope”??????

  20. Anna says:

    Erica is my absolute FAVORITE Lois Lane!! This recasting news is amazing, she’ll bring so much to the role. I’m hoping it’ll be a bigger role than Laura had, because Erica is so used to the Superman Universe that I think she’ll give such a crazy good performance :)

  21. Thomas Mercer says:

    I think that she should’ve gotten a role of her own. I think that it would’ve been cool to see her play her same role of Lois Lane from Smallville to Supergirl.

  22. Phun says:

    Sad to see Laura Benanti go but glad her replacement is Erica Durance. Since it’s a minor role, it shouldn’t make much of a difference with recasting Alura.

  23. LK says:

    Dont see a great need to bring Alura back.. too bad they cant actually cast her as an adult version of Lois.

    • Rex the Wonder Dog says:

      Probably has to do with the Reign story, as Kara’s father Zor-El created the Reign and the other Worldkillers in the comic books

  24. jericho says:

    Does this mean Laura has Broadway commitments or does she have a different series? She deserves a show of her own.

  25. Kevin Tran says:

    I’m so excited about the news. Erica Durance was the HOTTEST Lois Lane I have ever seen.

  26. ? says:

    Someone’s eventually going to have to play Lois Lane on Supergirl, and Erica Durance would be just the right age for how old she’s supposed to be in this incarnation. It’d have been cool if it were her. But maybe she doesn’t want to play Lois Lane anymore? I’d understand that. She spent a long time with that character. As for Alura, maybe she’s not exactly dead? The Supergirl/Superman comics once did a very long storyline where she was found alive in Kandor . . .

    • Ash says:

      Erica looks too much older than Tyler Hoechlin to be playing his soulmate… unless they’re planning an age discrepancy.

      • ? says:

        It’s not an age discrepancy, it’s an age appearance discrepancy. When Superman first appeared on Supergirl there was dialogue to be effect of him not looking as old as he actually was because of Kryptonian genes. Which means Lois would look older than him, but not actually be older.

      • Derek says:

        Clark was already Superman when Kara was 13. Therefore, he’s at least 36. But Cat Grant did address the fact he didn’t seem to age.

      • Dijeirusan says:

        Actually she’s the right age to play Lois, who is meant to be a few years older than Clark. Even in Smallville, Lois was 2 or 3 years older than Clark. Tyler’s Superman is 36/37 years old in the show, so Erica just playing her real-life age is perfect. I actually reckon she is playing Lois, and this is all a ruse to protect spoilers.

  27. Mary T says:

    I’m going to miss Laura as Alura. I had hoped that if she came back and they did another musical, they’d find a way to include her.
    But I did like Erica as Lois on Smallville, so I think she will be a good addition.

  28. william says:

    odette annabell and erica durance, well done CW.

  29. kiddo says:

    Laura is good but i love Erica too so its alright

  30. Butch says:

    So both Mon-El and Kara have Lois Lane as their mother. They now need Margot Kidder and Phylls Coates as Grandma and Great Grandma.

  31. arghC says:

    Saving Hope episode 14 of 18 just aired yesterday in Canada.

    Re: Alex Reid: while I appreciate that they were writing in Erica’s real life pregnancies, the way that they did it made her look like a sad medical professional that can’t manage her own fertility.

  32. Ash says:

    Upset but understanding about Laura’s reasons. Meh on the new casting. I feel like one of the few who didn’t care for her in the role on Smallville (and LOATHE new-fandom’s quickness to call her the Best Lois Of All Time inaccurately) and haven’t cared for her in much else she’s done since except for a cute little braindead Lifetime movie.

  33. Dawn says:

    Bring it on. If writing is good and actors “bring it”, I’m ready.

  34. Luis Roman says:


  35. Goldenvibefan says:

    Still waiting for Justin Hartley to get a cameo on arrow. Though it’s highly unlikely due to the success of This is Us

  36. Melvin Hill says:

    Erica Durance is a seasoned actor I feel she will add greatness to the show!

  37. RichieS says:

    Allison Mack, come on down…you’re next !

  38. parstl says:

    This is a non-issue. The more important question is whether they can get Calista to play Cat in at least 40-50 percent of the shows and settle down Karas work environment. Also please no more forced relationships for any cast regardlessof the politics.

  39. MattySi says:

    I’m not too excited for this. I always dislike recasting like this. We didn’t really see much of Alura in season 2 that I can remember. We would be find without her in Season 3. I mean I’m not much of a Laura Benanti fan anyway but couldn’t they find away to just give Erica Durance a different role?

  40. Eran says:

    ‘Shocker’ is a bit of a stretch, guys, come on… shocker recast would be if she had been taking over for Calista Flockhart.

  41. ChrisGa says:

    Well wishes to the great Laura Benanti on future endeavors–not to mention the new baby–but in this case I think the character is in wonderful hands now that she’ll be played by the best Lois Lane EVER(no offense to Teri, Margot, Noel et al).

  42. Dan Char says:

    i’ll always have a crush on Erica Durance… So good new!

  43. Would like to see Tom Welling on the show now……..

  44. Mare says:

    YAY, Erica Durance! Love her!

  45. christopher bee says:

    I´m happy that Erica, the very best and only Lois Lane comes back to the Superman Universe.
    I was also more than thrilled that finally Rookie Blues Missy Peregrim did her appearance on Saving Hope and had mayor screentime with Erica. Yes in my eyes the two hottest and talented female actors in Canada and there are just one or two Rookie blue main Cast left to say goodbye to their old Producer.

  46. Kimo says:

    Fantastic news! Erica is an all-round favorite in our house. She is a fabulous actor and was the best Lois Lane ever! Can’t wait to see her again on one of my favorite shows.