"<i>True Blood</i> is a go for a 4th season on HBO HBO has renewed the hit show True Blood for a 12-episode fourth season, it was announced today by Michael Lombardo, president, HBO Programming. Created by Alan Ball, the series will begin production of new episodes early next year in Los Angeles, with debut set for summer 2011.

"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," noted Lombardo.

Added Ball: "This is the most fun I have ever had."

Mixing romance, suspense, mystery and humor, True Blood follows the romance between waitress Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin), who can hear people's thoughts, and her boyfriend, 173-year-old vampire Bill Compton (Stephen Moyer), who went missing at the end of season two, and is now the object of a frantic search.