Joe Manganiello is sharing the story of his meetcute with Sofia Vergara.
The actor dropped by SiriusXM’s “The Jess Cagle Show” to promote his new series “Moonhaven”, and also dished on how he went about pursuing his now-wife Vergara.
While the two actors had seen each around Hollywood and even presented awards at the same MTV Music Awards show in 2010, it wasn’t until the White House Correspondents Dinner in 2014 that the two were introduced to each other properly.
At the time Manganiello admitted he was interested, but Vergara was engaged to Nick Loeb.
“Jesse Tyler Ferguson brought her over to me and made her say ‘hi’ to me or something. I was like, ‘Hi,’ you know,” he recalled. “I was like, ‘You know, how’s it going? Like your fiancés over there, what are you doing right now?’ You know?”
Despite his interest, the actor was sure to maintain a respectful distance.
“I mean, who wants to get into a fight in a tuxedo, you know? It’s not a good look. At the White House,” he explained. “‘Who invited that guy?’ ‘Oh, Jess [Cagle] did. Right.’ Now it’s like a whole big scandal. So yeah. I mean it was kind of like, ‘Alright, you know, yeah. That guy was there.’”
Unbeknownst to everyone, however, the two would actually split shortly afterwards and Cagle had the scoop.
The “True Blood” actor shared, “But then Jess, you found out that she was broken up with the guy at the time and you were gonna go public with it on People. And you sent me an email that said, ‘We’re about to-‘”
“Yeah, I gave you a heads up,” replied Cagle.
Laughing, Manganiello admitted, “And that’s what I needed. I had a head start.”
The two began dating in secret months later and went public with their relationship in August of the same year.
“So I flew to New Orleans and took her out and it was a great first date. And I went back out to work for a couple weeks on the road. And then after those two weeks, I came back to New Orleans, but to see her again. And this time I was gonna stay a week; see how that went,” said Manganiello.
Vergara was hesitant about jumping into the relationship so quickly after her breakup, but the actor revealed he had a secret ace up his sleeve.
“And so when I wound up seeing her again for the second time, I just said, ‘Look, you might need to be single. And I understand that. Now I can’t promise you I’m gonna be there at the end of your self-discovery process,’” he said. “‘But like, if you need to be single I’ll understand. I’ll deal with it. Life will go on.’”
It was at that point that he brought out an issue of People‘s magazine as a bargaining chip.
“‘But before you make your answer, hold on.’ And I reached into my bag and I pulled out the People magazine with me as the ‘Number One Bachelor in the World,’” he continued. “And I put it down on the table and I said, ‘Numero Uno.’ And then I slid it across the table to her.”
The 45-year-old was named People’s Hottest Bachelor in 2014, shortly after they began seeing each other.
Vergara had a hilarious response, however, to Manganiello’s attempt to persuade her.
“She picked up the magazine, she started flipping through it and I said, ‘You know, you’re, you’re skipping my interview. That’s my article.’ She said, ‘Yeah, I wanna see who else is on the list,’” he recalled with a laugh.
It all worked out in the end as the couple tied the knot a year later in a beautiful wedding at Palm Beach.