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Fox has scored a major coup with Gotham, a Batman prequel series developed by Warner Bros. TV and The Mentalist creator Bruno Heller.
The project kicked off a bidding war among the networks, but Fox surprisingly won out, notes Deadline, which first reported the news. A rep for WBTV also confirmed the news to TheWrap. Fox has committed to turning this into a series.
Gotham would center on the career of Jim Gordon before he becomes a commissioner and is still a detective. Batman be in the series, but since the Wayne family is such an integral part of the Gotham universe, fans will probably hear the name. Gordon is also a well-known name, having been in the Batman comics since the days of creators Bob Kane and Bill Finger and was played by Gary Oldman in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy.
This would be the first TV series in the Batman universe since Batman: The Animated Series. DC has had recent TV successes though, with Smallville and Arrow, both on WBTV and CBS’ The CW. A Flash spin-off of Arrow is also reportedly in the works. The CW has also kept the Wonder woman series Amazon alive.
It is interesting that Fox ended up with Gotham, but not surprising since it will likely have a darker, grittier tone and would be perfect for that network. Plus, as a police procedural, it isn’t targeted to the same demo that The CW has in mind.
THR notes that Gotham will likely air during the 2014-2015 season.
Coincidentally, Fox is also working with future Batman Ben Affleck on The Middle Man, a crime drama pilot that Argo star will direct.