Anna Paquin has been put through her paces as plucky waitress Sookie Stackhouse on HBO's "True Blood," but she hasn't been thrown a challenge from Creator/Executive Producer Alan Ball that she couldn't handle.
"I'm having the best time of my life. Are you kidding me?" Anna laughed at HBO's "True Blood" panel at the Television Critics Association Summer 2011 Session in Beverly Hills on Thursday, when asked about all the drama Sookie's gone through. "I dare him to come up with something I say no to."
In the current season, Anna's Sookie has been getting closer to Alexander Skarsgard's Eric, but whether she'll forgive Stephen Moyer's Bill Compton, her first true love, whose betrayal was revealed in the Season 3 finale, is a question the actress avoided answering.
"Do you think I'm gonna tell you that with my boss sitting here?" Anna laughed.
Alan, who confirmed he just signed on to produce the show for another year, said that splitting up Bill and Sookie this season had nothing to do with Anna and Stephen marrying last year in real life.
"I know that they think they kept [their relationship] a secret for a long time, and they did, but maybe not as long as they thought... Characters being happy and things working out for them is really not that interesting," Alan said of why the drama moved on in Season 4 from Sookie and Bill as a couple. "But I never said, 'I'm gonna split Bill and Sookie up.' They split up in the [Charlaine Harris] books and that's probably why we did it."
As for filming those scenes with Sookie and Bill fighting in Season 4, Anna said they haven't been taxing.
"Just speaking for me, our love in real life is fine, so I'm totally happy for our characters to be as sad and distraught and messed up and hating each other [as they have been]," she said.
"We want the show to be as dynamic and interesting as possible," she added.
Beyond talk of Season 4, Alan confirmed that the writers have already begun work on Season 5 and they plan to reveal one of the character's back stories next season.
"We're gonna go back and see how one of the vampires was made," Alan noted, not naming the character whose past will be revealed (although rumors point to it being Pam).
Stephen Moyer told reporters he's been enjoying Season 4, especially since the usually-serious Bill finally got to say a few funny lines, including last week's beekeeper reference to Kristin Bauer van Straten's Pam, who wore a hat and net to cover her decaying face.
"Kristin's got one coming up that's possibly one of the great lines of all time," Stephen said, slightly envious of his blonde co-star's upcoming dialogue.
"But she does them so beautifully," Anna added.
"True Blood" airs Sunday nights on HBO at 9 PM.
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