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Anna Paquin on True Blood

Published August 27, 2008 in Television
By Fred Topel | Image property of HBO
TV seems to be the place for vampire love stories. Poor Buffy just couldn't make it work with Angel, nor could Angel with Darla or Mick St. John and Coraline. (That last one was Moonlight in case, like many, you didn't get it.) HBO's True Blood has Sookie Stackhouse fall for vampire Bill Compton after a mass marketed blood drink allows vampires to rejoin society. Anna Paquin plays Sookie.

Anna Paquin Falls for True Blood

"Well, obviously, there's an immediate fascination and attraction between Bill and Soookie if for no other reason than anyone else is terrified of him," said Paquin. "She's just dying to go up and take his drink order. We do get to see the roller coaster of that relationship because, obviously, as the title of the book would suggest, having a vampire as a boyfriend isn't always the simplest of things to choose. So I don't know how to say much more about it without giving away the plot."

The social conflicts vampires find when they try to join human society may be metaphorical of other inequality issues, but Paquin cannot relate. "Well, I mean, I stopped dating vampires when I was 15 so I couldn't possibly remember," she joked.

True Blood True Blood

The character of Sookie gives her a lot to work with for an ongoing series. "I think she's so many things in one person. She's tough and she's courageous and she's smart, but she's sweet and she's innocent and she's naïve and she's quite sheltered and she is completely open minded which, in her very small town, is a little bit less common. There's just something about that level of enthusiasm that she has for things that are new and things that are exciting as opposed to being frightened that I think is really appealing, and you see that with the relationship with her grandmother. It's fascinating. It's not scary and the scary just makes it more fascinating. Those are the things I love about her."

Set in Louisiana, True Blood offered many preproduction challenges for Paquin as well. "Well, for starters, we all had to learn the accent. So that involved a lot of listening to tapes of people talking from those areas, watching films with the appropriate voices and dialects. It's amazing how much someone's voice is informed by the situation that they live in. There is a kind of music to the Southern dialect that is very much, from my outsider perspective obviously, a product of that sort of very hot, very sort of laid back at times because of that sort of overwhelming heat environment. Things move at a different pace which doesn't mean that it's not really exciting and scary and fast paced at times, but that was a huge part of becoming that character. Then the whole blonde thing and the tan thing and then reading the books and the scripts. So it's pretty much the same as for any job but quite radical for this one."

True Blood premieres September 7 on HBO.
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Compiled By (Sources)
Fred Topel
Sources: Image property of HBO

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