Our countdown of the Five Stars You'll Love this fall continues today with the introduction of 90210's young leads: Shenae Grimes and Tristan Wilds, who play the Midwestern Wilson siblings, Annie and Dixon, newly arrived in Beverly Hills from what the locals think of as the flyover states. Upon arrival they become overwhelmed, as you would be, by the madcap misbehavior of the local teen population.
Luckily for Beverly Hills, Shenae and Tristan are as charming, good-looking and grounded as they come, and they both have what it takes to anchor the CW's new flagship show and to show those rich kids how high school should really be done.
Click in to meet this toothsome twosome...
Who They Are: Shenae Grimes is best known for playing Darcy Edwards on seasons four through seven of the Canadian series Degrassi: The Next Generation (another franchise reboot!), while Tristan Wilds played troubled teen Michael on season four of HBO's The Wire, which is generally considered to be one of the best seasons of that acclaimed series.
Where to Meet Them: Meet these two on the steps of West Beverly High, where they are starting school after their parents (Rob Estes, Lori Loughlin) move them to the Hills of Beverly from Kansas because their grandmother (Jessica Walter) needs to be looked after more closely. Once in the Wild West (of Los Angeles), they start meeting and greeting the locals. Annie's most important encounter is with sweet and sexy jock Ethan Ward (Dustin Milligan), while Dixon finds himself in pursuit of a mysterious beauty who won't quite give him the time of day...
Why You'll Love Them: Tristan Wilds is made of 100 percent organic, biodynamically grown, locally produced charisma. The man is a sensation, and you will adore him. He reminds me a little of Zachary Levi—ready, willing and very, very able to charm us all into submission. Shenae, meanwhile, is the definition of inspired casting. Cute as a button, she's also got a certain steely grit (Jessica Walter is her grandma, after all) that makes her a splendid leading lady. I heart her, and I think you will too.
Check out the video below, then keep reading for a quick Q&A with Tristan and Shenae...
Annie Wilson, 90210
How do you feel about the network not screening the pilot to anyone before the premiere?
You know, we did a pilot, and we went straight into series—we didn't have that whole break to kind of figure out what's this show and does this work with the future episodes, and where is this going to go, and so on and so forth. We've been doing some reshoots, which is why you guys haven't been able to see it. We're working out and tweaking some things. You've got a lot to look forward to—it's not a bad thing at all.
Has your character changed when she comes to Beverly Hills?
She certainly envelops herself in the West Hollywood thing, trying to fit in with the Beverly clan, while dealing with it. She kind of does lose sight of what those original Kansas values were, but she's coming back there. She'll keeping making these circles, I think. Different situations will arise, and she'll veer off from those values a bit, but she'll always come back because it's who she is. She's got a great heart.
Can we just talk about your love interest, Adam Gregory, for a second?
Gorgeous, gorgeous. It's really hard kissing a boy who in fact is prettier than me, ladies. Those blue eyes...
And you're working with Shannen? How's that going?
So good, she's so awesome. I was like a kid on Christmas Day the day she showed up on set. I was like, "Guys! Guys! I get to meet Shannen today, oh my God!" I went into her trailer, and I left with a hug. It was amazing. This week is really going to get into the play stuff that Annie and Brenda do together, so I'll be working with her a lot more. I'm going to pick her brain and get some info out of her.
Dixon Wilson, 90210
No one has seen the show as of the premiere party—have you seen it?
I've seen a little bit of it, you know.
You guys are in for a treat.
Is it good? Are you good in it?
I'm all right.
Everyone else is great though?
Everybody else is great. I'm all right.
Finally some honesty on the red carpet, thank you.
No problem, I'm here to tell the truth.
But how do you feel about not releasing the pilot to the press before hand. Do you think that's a smart move?
You know what? It's one of those really strategic moves because either everybody just writes about it and says how good it is, or it can fall. We'll just wait till Sept. 2 to see which one you guys think it is.
Eeek! That's today! Sept. 2 is today, which means the 90210 premiere is tonight at 8 on the CW. A new era dawns...
After the show, come back here and let's dish, shall we? The comments and I await your verdict!