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HBO Renews 'True Blood'

HBO has
renewed True Blood for a fourth season of 12 episodes, the network
announced June 21. The series will begin production
early next year in Los Angeles for a summer 2011 debut.

has become
HBO's most-watched series. The show's third-season opener earlier this month
was up 38% year-to-year with 5.1 million viewers.

"The new season of True Blood is off to a terrific start, as enthusiasm
for this unique show continues to build among both subscribers and critics,"
Michael Lombardo, president, HBO Programming, said in a statement.

creator Alan Ball added: "I am beyond thrilled to be able to continue working
with this amazing cast and crew. This is the most fun I have ever had."

HBO will
return Entourage and Hung June 27. And this fall, the network
will bow it's expensive new drama Boardwalk Empire. The show, set in
Prohibition-era Atlantic City, is from Sopranos'
writer Terence Winter; its pilot was directed by Martin Scorsese.