Gordon-Focused "Gotham" Series Headed to Fox

"Gotham," a new drama based on the DC Comics world of Batman, has received a series commitment from Fox, as first reported by Deadline.

Bruno Heller, creator of "The Mentalist" and co-creator of "Rome," is set to write and executive produce. The series will depict the early stories of both Commissioner James Gordon and Gotham City's villains, though Deadline notes that Batman will not be a part of the series. "Gotham" will focus on Gordon as a detective in the Gotham City Police Department, before the character met Batman.

The news is notable both for the series commitment -- which Variety calls "not quite an on-air order but a hefty down payment" -- and the fact that the series is at Fox rather than The CW, which airs "Arrow" and has "The Flash" in development as a possible spinoff. The CW is 50 percent owned by DC parent company Time Warner. Deadline called "Gotham" one of the "two hottest drama projects this season," along with CBS sci-fi series "Extant."

One of DC's oldest and most recognizable characters, James Gordon was created by Bill Finger and Bob Kane, and first appeared in 1939's "Detective Comics" #27; also the first appearance of Batman. Gordon has been depicted multiple times in previous live-action projects, most recently by Gary Oldman in Christopher Nolan's "Dark Knight" trilogy.

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