San Diego Comic-Con is nigh, and hipster comic book writer Matt Fraction is already enjoying the spoils of Hollywood’s yearly bum-rush to embrace all things geektastic: He’s just inked a deal with producer Rick Alexander (MGM’s Adventures in the Land of Zametherea) and manager-producer Jeff Krelitz to turn two of his co-creations, Casanova and Last of the Independents, into movies. A major A-list actor is already mulling over the lead in Casanova, an adventure-caper about a thief-turned-spy, which Alexander promises will evolve into a “mega-budget, effects-intensive action spectacular.” (He says he’s aiming to unleash the “spectacular” during the Fourth of July weekend 2010.) This is merely the first of what the producers hope will be a Bond-type franchise. Casanova “[will] live on but be played by a different actor each time out,” says Krelitz, who notes that the duo will hire a scriptwriter only after securing a star and director. As for the swaggering bank-heist thriller Independent? It already has a screenwriter — that’d be newcomer Alex Litvak — so producers are currently shopping for a director with hopes of an early 2009 shoot. — By Nisha Gopalan

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