Alexander Skarsgard, Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer attend the season five… (Frazer Harrison / Getty…)
A show like HBO's "True Blood" looks like a blast to put together, but there's plenty of sweat and tears to go along with all that dripping red.
In a word: "We shoot the [stuff] out of these episodes," cast member Kristin Bauer van Straten told the Ministry at the show's season five premiere after-party.
At the newly redesigned Hollywood mega-club Lure, cast and crew toasted their efforts (with one episode left to complete), which can get extreme in the fictional land of always-naked vampires, werewolves, witches and such.
"Embarrassing doesn't really cover it," creator Alan Ball said in opening remarks about the trials he puts his actors through. "A sock barely covers it."
The men who don such socks include Alexander Skarsgard, Stephen Moyer, Ryan Kwanten and fan-favorite Joe Manganiello, all in attendance alongside ladies like Anna Paquin (rocking a baby bump) and Rutina Wesley.
Bauer van Straten, who stole the season premiere at a screening just up the street at the Cinemadome, mentioned one scene that required her vampire character be buried in the ground.
"I had dirt everywhere," she said. "My husband, he's used to it. I mean, I was brushing my teeth and dirt was falling out of my eyebrows into the sink."
But that hard work doesn't go unrewarded. Past cast members like Michelle Forbes and Kevin Alejandro came to support their pals, and a few fans like Jack McBrayer ("30 Rock's" Kenneth the page), who hung with Skarsgard (awesome odd couple) and snacked on the fete's notoriously awesome catering.
Dennis O'Hare, also of "American Horror Story" fame, chatted up costar Todd Lowe. Paquin greeted miles of well-wishers on her fast-approaching little one with husband Moyer.
That would mark the first "True Blood" baby. But that's a whole other case of blood, sweat and tears.
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Follow Matt Donnelly on Twitter @mattdonnelly.