Tristan Wilds, who plays 90210’s Kansas transplant Dixon Wilson, is also known for his portrayal of teen drug dealer Michael on ‘The Wire.’ Just how would the rich kids at Beverly Hills High react to Michael crashing their school? Tristan talked to us about what he thinks would happen, and what it was like working with music star Pharrell and celebrity DJ Samantha Ronson on set.
Sandy still wants Dixon even though she knows he is a high school student. What is his secret to seducing cougars or kittens?
I honestly don’t know. I guess something that has to do with charm or something.
Did you actually get to drive the Lamborghini for this storyline?
Yeah. It’s a beautiful car.
The porn movies in the trunk had such funny titles. Did the prop department actually make up hundreds of fake porn titles?
Yes they did. It was just hilarious. During breaks we would look through them and laugh.
Are Dixon and Silver ever going to get back together?
I wouldn’t be who I am if I just told you guys. Y’all got to wait and see.
Will Dixon ever forgive Annie? They had such a close sibling relationship in season one.
Dixon will always be an older brother to Annie. Always. That’s the way that they grew up. But you have to wait and see if their relationship is mended.
Executive Producer Rebecca Rand Kirshner has completely revamped the show. Is there a new vibe on set this season?
Kind of. But it’s still very much us as a family. There’s an obvious absence [Dustin Mulligan], but it’s still very, very cool. Everybody gets along great.
Who are your closest buddies on the show?
Honestly, it would probably have to be the guys: Steger, Matt and Trevor.
I read on Twitter that you have some upcoming scenes at a racetrack. What is going to happen?
We’re at the horse races. I can’t tell you what happens there but right now we are on episode 11. It’s getting really, really good. We’re traveling everywhere for locations to show what California really is. By the time you guys get to where we are, you guys will be so wrapped in everything. It’s going to be crazy.
Speaking of cool locations, what was it like shooting scenes with Pharrell and Samantha Ronson at [ultrahip downtown speakeasy] the Edison on the November 3 episode?
It was crazy. Seriously – Pharrell, Samantha Ronson. What can you say?
What have been some of your favorite scenes from this season?
The Halloween scene where I have to dress up as Dr. J. It’s fun. I have the afro, the mustache, the really high shorts.
What was it like going from one of the most critically acclaimed television shows of all time, The Wire, to 90210, which got no respect in its first season?
It’s definitely a transition and I think it’s a transition that needed to be made. I didn’t want to be pigeonholed to playing roles like Michael. I didn’t always want to play a kid stuck in his ways or a kid stuck in the hood. I wanted to show that I’m a lot more than that and we are a lot more than that. There’s a lot of actors out there who did get pigeonholed.
What do you think would have happened if Michael from The Wire ended up moving to Beverly Hills?
Beverly Hills would be [in] for a rude awakening.
Would you like to see Dixon reconnect with his biological mother?
That would be dope. Who knows? From our lips to God’s ears.
What’s a typical day like on the set of 90210?
Call time is maybe 8. You get there. You do hair. You do make-up. They call you for rehearsal. Rehearsal’s really cool. It’s time to have fun and find where you want the scene to go. Then they set up cameras and lights. Then you do it. It all depends on how many scenes you have or how big your scene is to determine how long your day is going to be.
You’re going to star in Red Tail, an upcoming movie about the Tuskegee Airmen that George Lucas is producing.
We just finished it a couple months back. The experiences, the research that we’ve done, we learned a lot about people that were left out of the history books. A lot of people don’t even know about the Tuskegee airmen. It’s an amazing story and definitely one of my favorite roles.
Other than your own show, what television shows do you like to watch?
You started acting when you were very young. What advice would you give to kids who want to get started in the entertainment industry?
When you make up your mind that this is what you want to do, be persistent because persistence always breaks resistance.