Paul Willson

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Paul Willson
Born Paul Lee Willson
(1945-12-25) December 25, 1945 (age 69)
Fairmont, Minnesota, U.S.
Occupation Actor
Years active 1970–present

Paul Lee Willson[1] (born December 25, 1945) is an American actor, most notable for his television work. He was born in Fairmont, Minnesota, the son of Doris Geraldine and Lee Wilford Willson.[1]

Willson has played numerous guest characters on a variety of shows including Full House as Stu in episode "Crimes and Michelle's Demeanor" in 1990, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Boston Public, Caroline in the City and Star Trek: Voyager. He is perhaps most famous for his repeated guest character of "Paul" on the television show Cheers (which he also reprised in an episode of the Cheers spin-off, Frasier). His character was originally called "Tom" because Paul Vaughn was already playing a character named "Paul" on Cheers. For five years (1986-1990) he was Garry Shandling's neighbour "Leonard Smith" on It's Garry Shandling's Show. Willson also appeared on Garry Shandling's The Larry Sanders Show playing Larry's accountant, and the brother of Sid the cue card holder. He played Ed, a neighbour, in a few episodes of Malcolm in the Middle. He also starred in the comedy film Office Space as one of "The Bobs". He was recently[when?] in a promotional video for the Nintendo DS game Personal Trainer: Cooking with Fred Willard.

Although primarily recognized for his television work, he has been noted as a "great improv player" by Garry Shandling as a result of their time working together doing improv in the late 1970s.[2]

Since 2012 he has appeared in television ads for Safeco Insurance.


  1. ^ a b Paul Willson Biography (1945-)
  2. ^ DVD commentary from It's Garry Shandling's Show, season 2, episode 18, "No Baby, No Show"

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