With DC and Marvel expanding their big-screen superhero successes with television shows left and right, it seemed like only a matter of time before 20th Century Fox would attempt the same with their X-Men. And now, TVInsider is reporting that Fox Entertainment chairmean Gary Newman has informed them that an X-Men television series is in talks with Marvel.
"It's in negotiations," Newman tells TVInsider. "We're cautiously optimistic, we had a good meeting with [Marvel]. That will not be on a fast track creatively. This is just the deal, now we have to find the creative."
Newman states that the earliest any series could hit TV scheduled would be 2016. Any X-Men TV show would presumably find at a home at Fox, where Gotham debuted to great success in fall 2014.
The Hollywood Reporter added to this potential news, saying that unnamed sources informed them that Fox has a core group of producers and writers working on this tentative X-Men television series. According to THR, Evan Katz and Manny Coto from 24 are involved as producers/showrunners, with Patrick mcKay and JD Payne, who recently did a draft of Star Trek 3, are involved as writers.
Although 20th Century Fox owns the film rights to Marvel's X-Men, the television rights for the X-Men are murky. In 2001, 20th Century Fox sued Marvel over the production of the television series Mutant-X which Fox saw as too similiar to the X-Men. The two parties settled in 2003 behind closed doors, so it's possible that settlement -- or the murky state of the X-Men TV rights which led to the lawsuit in the first place -- is something 20th Century Fox and Marvel are attempting to work out.
Last April, longtime writer/producer of the X-Men film franchise Simon Kinberg called an X-Men television series inevitable.
“We’re still in this place of figuring out what the future of the franchise will be, but when you look at [Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.] to some extent and what Marvel is doing now with Daredevil and other shows on Netflix, it makes sense to tell some of these stories in TV partly because there’s just not enough screens to do all of these characters,” Kinberg told Collider. “And also because the serialized format of comic books is better suited for TV. Because that’s it, every week you come back to the same characters different story, and in comic books every week it’s the same characters, different story.”