Lethal Weapon star Michelle Mitchenor, and actor Coley Mustafa Speaks, who starred in the Netflix series Seven Seconds, are making it official this October — and Speaks says he made sure that his wife-to-be would be completely surprised by his proposal.
“The engagement was EPIC,” he tells PEOPLE. “It was one of the most difficult acting roles I’ve tackled thus far.”
The actor says he decided to pop the question during a private screening of Mitchenor’s debut on the BET movie Tales: Trap Queens, and in order to throw her off the scent, he picked a huge (but fake) fight with her the night before.
“I had ZERO idea this was coming because of the fight he faked the night before,” says Mitchenor with a laugh.
Apparently, the fake fight ended up going a little too realistically. “It was so bad I wasn’t sure she’d want to see me again,” Speaks says. “But I stayed in character all the way through and it paid off beautifully.”
During the private screening, Speaks got down on one knee with a rose gold ring with one-carat around the band set with a one-carat diamond. “I cried, I laughed and kept saying ‘Shut the eff up!'” says Mitchenor, who adores the ring. “It’s has such a unique and vintage style to it. It stands alone and represents me perfectly.”
Speaks says he knew he wanted to marry his girlfriend during their first outreach trip to Uganda, Africa, with Mitchenor’s non-profit The Mitchenor Foundation.
“We spent every second together for two weeks in some of the most extreme conditions,” he says. “A true test. We learned a lot about each other and I saw Michelle’s purest essence and fell in love with every bit of it.” He says, joking, “Even the stinky parts.”
Speaks adds, “I adore and admire her dynamism as a woman. As a black woman. As a black woman professional with the heart of a Goddess.”
Mitchenor says she’s enamored by Speaks’ ability to communicate. “It lets me know that no matter what the situation is, we can talk through it,” she says. “Also, I feel so free with him. I became even more solid in who I was as a woman with him, and he allows me to still explore and grow as an individual. Allowing me to blossom and understand who I am is how I know he’s the one.”
The couple are now planning an October wedding, for around 150 guests. As for what’s next for the duo? “We just want to continue to love on each other, and whatever becomes of that, we trust the timing will be perfect for us,” says Mitchenor.
Lethal Weapon Season 3 will return to FOX on September 25.