Ben McKenzie, who shot to stardom playing Ryan Atwood on the hit TV series The O.C., has been cast as James Gordon in the Fox network’s Gotham. The TV series is a Batman prequel, and McKenzie will play the man who goes on to become the commissioner of Gotham City, who works closely with Batman to help keep the peace in the community. Rather than focusing on Batman, the series will center on Commissioner Gordon and the villains who try to overtake Gotham. Danny Cannon will direct the pilot, which has already been picked up as a series. Gordon will start out in the pilot as a rookie detective with the Homicide Squad. Brave, honest and a bit naive, Gordon is idealistic but backs up his ideals with action. McKenzie also starred in the long-running police drama series Southland, and provided the voice of Bruce Wayne/Batman in the 2011 animated Batman: Year One.