'True Blood' makes Joe Manganiello a regular

joe-manganiello-true-blood-s3-320.jpgAlcide will be sticking around Bon Temps for a while.

HBO's "True Blood" has made Joe Manganiello a full-time member of the cast. He'll be a regular in Season 4 of the show, Deadline.com reports.

Manganiello's increased role on the show mirrors his character's status in Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse novels. Werewolf Alcide Herveaux is a key character in the book series and becomes deeply involved in Sookie's ( Anna Paquin on the show) life.

Despite that, Manganiello's promotion is something of a change in direction for the show. He was originally hired for just a few episodes, but both actor and character clicked, leading to him becoming a regular.

"True Blood" has a panel at Comic-Con on Friday (July 23); stay tuned to Zap2it for more news from San Diego.

For the record: An earlier version of this post stated "True Blood" had yet to be renewed for Season 4; it has been.

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Photo credit: HBO