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Liza Weil

Liza Weil

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Birth Place: Profession: actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Liza Weil was auditioning for roles before she had even reached her teens and that persistence led to theatre work, shorts, and feature film credits that helped secure the television part that brought the New Jersey native to prominence. Weil's praised turn as an alienated teenager in the low-budget drama "Whatever" (1998) opened some doors, though her subsequent film appearances were mostly in other independent productions that did not break out beyond the usual venues. However, she was also seen in the widely distributed genre features "Stir of Echoes" (1998) and "Dragonfly" (2002), and became familiar to the television audiences upon being added to the cast of "Gilmore Girls" (The WB, 2000-07), where her sarcastic overachieving character Paris Gellar was one of the program's main draws. Once Weil's career started rolling, she was rarely at a loss for work and jumped from stage to films to television, including memorable guest spots on programs like The West Wing" (NBC, 1999-2006) and "ER" (NBC, 1994- 2009). Weil also garnered a lot of attention for her fine dramatic work on "Scandal" (ABC, 2012 - ), where she played a former White House intern who claimed to have been impregnated by the president;...

Liza Weil was auditioning for roles before she had even reached her teens and that persistence led to theatre work, shorts, and feature film credits that helped secure the television part that brought the New Jersey native to prominence. Weil's praised turn as an alienated teenager in the low-budget drama "Whatever" (1998) opened some doors, though her subsequent film appearances were mostly in other independent productions that did not break out beyond the usual venues. However, she was also seen in the widely distributed genre features "Stir of Echoes" (1998) and "Dragonfly" (2002), and became familiar to the television audiences upon being added to the cast of "Gilmore Girls" (The WB, 2000-07), where her sarcastic overachieving character Paris Gellar was one of the program's main draws. Once Weil's career started rolling, she was rarely at a loss for work and jumped from stage to films to television, including memorable guest spots on programs like The West Wing" (NBC, 1999-2006) and "ER" (NBC, 1994- 2009). Weil also garnered a lot of attention for her fine dramatic work on "Scandal" (ABC, 2012 - ), where she played a former White House intern who claimed to have been impregnated by the president; that story arc led to a series regular role at attorney Bonnie Winterbottom on producer Shonda Rhimes' next project "How To Get Away With Murder" (ABC 2014- ). Weil was shrewd enough to vary the sort of characters she undertook and thus had ample opportunity to display her proficiency with both comedic and dramatic material.

New Jersey native Liza Rebecca Weil was born on June 5, 1977 to parents well acquainted with performing and the arts. Her father, Marc Weil, founded The Madhouse Company of London comedy troupe in 1973 and specialized in a brand of lunacy patterned after the Marx Brothers and Monty Python. The revue - which included popular actor-comedian Jim Carter among its cast members - was a success and he toured throughout Europe and the United States with his wife, Lisa. When daughter Liza came along a few years into the run, she, too, travelled with the troupe. It was this show business exposure from an early age that no doubt helped inspire her decision to pursue acting. Weil's parents supported that dream and by age 12, she was going to auditions. After spending some time in Boston, MA, the family eventually moved to Lansdale, PA, where Weil attended North Penn High School. A less-than-engaged student by her own admission, she did glean satisfaction from the experience by participating in some of the institution's dramatic presentations. At age 16, she made her stage bow in the play "The Speed of Darkness" at the Montgomery Theater in Sounderton.

Weil was still a student at North Penn when she received her first TV credit on the Nickleodeon show "The Adventures of Pete & Pete" (1993-96). Upon finishing high school, she moved to New York City to attend Columbia University and earned a role in the award-winning dramatic short "A Cure for Serpents" (1997). Weil then landed her first starring part as a disaffected 1980s teen in the coming-of-age drama "Whatever" (1998). The film was not widely distributed, but both it and Weil's subtle, yet expressive performance were generally well reviewed and she followed up with a supporting assignment in the Kevin Bacon horror sleeper "Stir of Echoes" (1998). After guest parts on such programs as "The West Wing" (NBC, 1999-2006), where she played an intern responsible for a disastrous press leak, Weil was enlisted for a three-episode stint on the dramedy "Gilmore Girls" (The WB, 2000-07) as pushy, sardonic and committed student Paris Gellar. Response to her character and performance was enthusiastic and she was invited to join the cast of regulars, due in no small part to Weil's comedic abilities which helped to make the often exasperating Paris also surprisingly endearing, particularly when verbally sparring with her fellow prep students.

In between working on the show, Weil also found time to appear in the Kevin Costner fantasy "Dragonfly" (2002). One of her more unusual assignments was the short horror film "Grace" (2006), about a woman who is told that her unborn baby is dead, but decides to carry the child to term anyway. The project was created to generate funding for a feature length version, which was released in 2009, but with Weil's character interpreted instead by Jordan Ladd. In 2006, Weil married actor Paul Adelstein, best known for the programs "Prison Break" (Fox, 2005-09) and "Private Practice" (ABC, 2007-13). The couple split in 2016.

When "Gilmore Girls" concluded its run, Weil resumed guest starring on primetime programs, including a memorable episode of "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" (CBS, 2000-15) that sent up programs like "Star Trek" and science fiction fans. Weil also received an Indie Soap Award for the Internet series "Anyone but Me" (2008), where she appeared in four episodes as a therapist working with one-half of the young lesbian couple at the show's core. She also appeared in a handful of short features and additional independent films, including "Year of the Dog" (2007), "Neal Cassady" (2007), "The Missing Person" (2009) and "Frenemy" (2009), which was misleadingly marketed as a Zach Galifianakis vehicle on the basis of his co-starring role. Weil garnered a lot of attention for her six-episode run on the mid-season replacement "Scandal" (ABC, 2012- ), which centered around a respected public relations damage control team, led by the series' star, Kerry Washington. After the end of her story arc on "Scandal," Weil reteamed with producer Shonda Rhimes for legal drama "How To Get Away With Murder" (ABC 2014- ), playing the key supporting character of ambitious attorney Bonnie Winterbottom. Having taken a recurring role on creator Amy Sherman-Palladino's short-lived "Bunheads" (ABC Family 2012-13), Weil slipped back into character as Paris Geller for the miniseries "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life" (Netflix 2016).

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Smiley (2012)
2.
 Mars (2010)
3.
4.
 Year of the Dog (2007)
5.
 Dragonfly (2002) Suicide Girl
6.
 Stir of Echoes (1999)
7.
 Whatever (1998) Anna Stockard
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Milestones close milestones

:
Raised in Bucks County, Pennsylvania
1998:
Breakthrough screen role in "Whatever"
1999:
Played pivotal role in "Stir of Echoes"
2000:
Had recurring role on "ER" as the wife of a mentally unstable man
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