Michael Trevino is the definition of a heartthrob. The 27-year-old Mexican-American has appeared on shows like 90210, Charmed and Cold Case, but it’s his role as the football playing hybrid on the CW’s hit series The Vampire Diaries, that has elevated Trevino to true sex symbol status. (We named him one of Fall TV’s Heartbreakers for a reason.) Here, Trevino talks werewolves or vampires, blondes or brunettes, and the one hairstyle on a girl that drives him wild.
You’re from Los Angeles, but shoot in Atlanta. What do you do when you’re back home?
When I’m back in L.A., I try to fit in as much press as I can and also have some family time. But once everyone knows that I’m back in town, it’s like “Come here! Go there!” I’m not really a homebody person, so I like going out and I like seeing everybody and going to shows or just going to have a drink.
What’s up with Tyler next season?
Well, we left off where Tyler becomes possessed by Klaus’ being, so we kind of see how that comes into play. One would think because we have this love triangle between Klaus and Tyler and Caroline, that Klaus would take full advantage of being inside Tyler’s body in relation to Caroline. So, we’ll see how far that goes. I would like to be able to play Klaus for a while, but I think we’re going to bring back Joseph Morgan a lot sooner than you think.
What do you hope for your character?
I’m hoping that it’s a great season and that Tyler can stay alive, because with any supernatural show, people are dying left and right. But I think what you can see is me kind of figuring out a different layer to Tyler. He’s graduating high school. These kids are teenagers and they’re starting to become adults. All of these characters are breaking away from the supernatural side and showing more of their human sides, so I’m looking forward to that.
Is there any rivalry between you and Steven R. McQueen [who plays Jeremy Gilbert on The Vampire Diaries] in real life? Your characters had some rivalry on the show.
No way—Steven’s like my little brother. We call him “Little Brother” or “Little McQueen,” even though he towers over me in height. [Laughs] We have all been on the show since day one when we shot the pilot in Vancouver. There’s no real rivalry; we go at each other like brothers.
Okay, important question: Werewolves or vampires?
Because for me, I feel like there’s just this inner rage within a werewolf that’s more appealing to me instead of this kind of flamboyant vampire attitude.
What you’re saying is that werewolves are more badass.
I am. That appeals to me more than…pretty vampires.
A certain pretty vampire that might have a franchise, perhaps?
[Laughs] Well, I’m not calling any specific vampires out, but I can say that at least on our show, in our realm of the supernatural, our vampires don’t sparkle.
Blondes or brunettes?
[Laughs] I’m going to say brunettes. I’ve always had a thing for brunettes. And I like bangs. If you’re a brunette and you have bangs, that’s a big turn-on for me. I like blondes too, but brunettes sort of do it for me.
Do you have a crush on anyone in Hollywood?
You know, there’s just something about Kate Beckinsale that I like—she’s super talented and just gorgeous. But I’m Hispanic so I really love Salma Hayek, too. She’s great. I just saw the movie Savages.
You must have loved her hair in that movie.
Yes! The long, dark hair and the straight-cut bangs. She’s gorgeous.
Do you speak Spanish?
It was my first language, but when my mother went back to work and I had a babysitter, she didn’t keep me fluent in it. It’s weird because I can’t have a full-on conversation in Spanish, but I can put words together and I can understand what’s being said to me in Spanish. I can’t have a full conversation with my grandmother because she doesn’t know English and I have a bunch of cousins that only speak Spanish. I’m just the odd man out, really.
What’s your type when it comes to women?
I don’t have a specific type. I love women in general—I really do. I have such a love for them and appreciation for their being. I’ve recently been lucky enough with this show to travel to countries that I’ve never been to, and it’s just such an eye-opener. I’ve seen different cultures, styles, music, food and, of course, women. They’re all around and I’m loving it!
Do you remember your first love?
I have a very strong affection towards Asian women—I get it from my father. We have this crazy infatuation with Asian women. My first crush was when I was in third grade. Her name was Melody Chow and she was this Korean girl. I just thought she was beautiful. I had this huge, huge crush on her and nobody else did in the class, which was just kind of odd to me. She wasn’t my first love, but my first strong crush, for sure. Melody Chow.
Did you ever ask her out?
Do you regret that?
No, no. I mean, we kept in touch in high school, but I haven’t talked to her in years. I remember in school we were in this play and she played the queen and I ended up playing the king. That kind of worked out in my favor because I was able to dance with her. That was enough for me, to just be able to dance with her as part of the play. That’s as far as it went. I really never had the balls to ask her out.
Have you ever had a really horrible date?
I haven’t had any really, really bad dates, but there have been times that I’ll go on a date and the chemistry just isn’t there. I feel like some guys just kind of give up, but what you have to do is just totally flip it. Just be open and honest with her and say, “Hey, this isn’t really working out on a romantic level.” If you can both just come to an agreement on that, then you can flip the whole date around and be like “Alright, well we’re just hanging out! Let’s just be friends then. It’s all good.” If you try to push something and it’s not there, then it just becomes awkward.
Have you ever broken a girl’s heart?
I don’t know, I can’t honestly say if I’ve ever broken a girl’s heart. Without a doubt, my intention is to never break any girl’s heart.
What’s the most romantic thing that you’ve done for a girl?
Oh man. You know, I do have some examples, but it’s just a full-on story and it really goes there. I can’t really say…
I’m trying to think of a PG-13 version of it but it still ends up including something that I can’t share!