Kristen Stewart Will Play A Real-Life Hero In Her First TV Show, And I Can’t Wait To See Her Crush Another Leading LGBTQ+ Role

Kristen Stewart in Love Lies Bleeding
(Image credit: A24)

In a landscape where great LGBTQ+ characters being played by queer actors can be hard to come by, Kristen Stewart has been creating a lot of opportunities for herself to continue to tell thoughtful queer stories. Next, she has just nabbed her first leading role in a TV series, and it beautifully continues this streak for Stewart. I can't wait to see her crush this! 

Kristen Stewart Is Leading Her First TV Show 

Stewart has just signed on to star and produce a miniseries called The Challenger, where she’ll play Sally Ride, the first American woman and member of the LGBTQ+ community to fly into space, per Deadline. For as long as the actress has been working, it will actually be her first TV series ever!

The Challenger will be written by Maggie Cohn, who contributed to shows like American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace, The Staircase and Narcos: Mexico. It’s also being produced by Kyra Sedgwick, who has been developing it since 2017. 

The actress will be playing the NASA icon, who flew to space for the first time in 1983 to a ton of media buzz. Ride got to spend over 343 hours in space across her two trips and had planned on more if it wasn’t for the tragic Challenger disaster of 1986. Following the Space Shuttle breaking apart 73 seconds into its launch, Ride was placed on the Rogers Commission, to investigate what went wrong. Following her death, it was revealed that Ride was behind one major discovery in the investigation that led to the commission understanding the cause of the explosion. 

Considering the TV show is titled The Challenger, we imagine the series will place its main focus on telling the story of Sally Ride’s involvement in the Rogers Commission. Sally Ride, who died in 2012 of cancer, is a real-life American hero and a queer icon. 

Kristen Stewart Has An Impressive Streak Of LGBTQ+ Roles Going 

As Kristen Stewart signs on the show, I think it's worth noting how successful Stewart has been with finding quality LGBTQ+ roles lately. 

In a world where the queer community is often pushed to the sidelines when it comes to storytelling, the actress has found herself in a ton of diverse roles that allow her to explore the many experiences of queer people. She most recently received a lot of love for her Sundance film, Love Lies Bleeding, producing her own queer ghost-hunting show and of course starring as the lead of the Happiest Season cast

I can’t wait to see Kristen Stewart continue to explore her range whilst also being true to what roles speak to her. Her career is really showcasing how queer actors really can find authentic and important characters representing the LGBTQ+ community if they seek it out. 

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

Sarah El-Mahmoud has been with CinemaBlend since 2018 after graduating from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in Journalism. In college, she was the Managing Editor of the award-winning college paper, The Daily Titan, where she specialized in writing/editing long-form features, profiles and arts & entertainment coverage, including her first run-in with movie reporting, with a phone interview with Guillermo del Toro for Best Picture winner, The Shape of Water. Now she's into covering YA television and movies, and plenty of horror. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.