After Sunday night’s hot season premiere of ‘True Blood,’ many fans are probably hoping the series will live forever, just like the vampires it chronicles. However, most HBO series are decidedly mortal. ‘The Sopranos‘ and ‘Sex and The City‘ lasted six seasons, ‘Six Feet Under‘ and ‘The Wire‘ lasted five. ‘Deadwood‘ only lasted three. ‘True Blood’s’ creator Alan Ball thinks that the series has the potential to beak HBO’s longevity record and run almost as many seasons as ‘Law and Order.’
Ball explained, “I think ‘True Blood’ could run longer than ‘Six Feet Under’ [also created by Ball] because of the supernatural element. There’s just so many areas to create stories that we didn’t have on ‘Six Feet Under’. Literally by the fourth season we started to hit the wall. It was like what about –oh no we did that in season two. But because of the supernatural element in ‘True Blood’ I feel like it could continue much longer.”
Since each season of ‘True Blood’ has been based on one of Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse novels, according to Ball there is another decade’s worth of source material. “I know Charlaine just published her tenth book as she has plans for at least three more. I think it could run as long as [the books] run.”
Of course Ball’s answer does not take into account another key factor: the cast. Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer and the rest of the gang from Bon Temps may not be willing to stay with the show indefinitely. Most television dramas sign actors to initial five year contracts then renegotiate if the show lasts longer.
Ball pragmatically noted that the show might run out of gas before the books end, though HBO will surely want to keep it going as long as it remains popular.”It will be the same thing as ‘Six Feet Under’. Once it feels like it’s the right time to end the show then we’ll end it. Or I don’t know. This one’s much more successful for HBO than ‘Six Feet Under’ was. So maybe they’ll say, ‘Oh no. We’ll just get somebody else to run it.'”
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