Up-and-comer Trevor Wright is used to making a big impression in as little time as possible. First, the California boy's appearance in pop singer Stacie Orrico's "Stuck" video so wowed the TRL crowd that he was invited to return in a follow-up clip. And tonight at 10 pm/ET, you can catch the Tiger Beat dreamboat in what sounds like an especially nasty episode of ABC's NYPD Blue.

"It's a great part," he tells TV Guide Online with enthusiasm. "I play a guy who made a suicide pact with his 15-year-old girlfriend because she got pregnant, but my intentions were never to actually kill myself. So it's sort of Romeo and Juliet with a twist — [this time] Romeo's a [jerk]!"

Messing with his Clearasil-heartthrob image at this early stage in the game might seem like career hari-kari for Wright, who starred with a snowboarding chimp in his first feature, MXP: Most Extreme Primate. But the ambitious actor has his eye on a prize that's even harder won than locker-pin-up status — and already tastemakers are taking notice: Recently, he landed on Teen Vogue's list of Hollywood's new "It" kids.

"A lot of casting directors saw that," he says, insisting that catered lunches and 24-hour chauffeur service are not among the perks of inclusion among the elite. "Apparently, because of 'Stuck,' I'm also huge in Japan." However, the most enviable byproduct of Wright's rising profile may be his near-romance with that kinder, gentler Britney. "Stacie's adorable," he admits. "I asked her out and she said yeah, but she lives in Tennessee.

"When," he concludes with a sigh, "am I ever going to be able to see her?"