Liza Weil

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Liza Weil
Liza Weil (cropped).jpg
Weil in 2005
Liza Rebecca Weil

(1977-06-05) June 5, 1977 (age 45)[1][2][3][4]
EducationColumbia University
Years active1993–present
(m. 2006; div. 2017)
RelativesScarlett Estevez (niece)

Liza Rebecca Weil (born June 5, 1977) is an American actress. She is best known for her starring role as Paris Geller in the WB/CW comedy-drama series Gilmore Girls (2000–2007) and its Netflix revival series Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life (2016). She is also known for her roles as White House aide Amanda Tanner in the ABC political drama series Scandal (2012) and as attorney Bonnie Winterbottom in the ABC legal drama series How to Get Away with Murder (2014–2020).

Early life and training[edit]

Weil was born in Passaic, New Jersey, into an acting family.[5] She was raised in, and continues to practice, Reform Judaism.[6]

Her parents, Lisa and Marc Weil, toured Europe with their comedy troupe, The Madhouse Company of London, with her in tow. Weil had aspirations of becoming an archaeologist in her younger years, because of the Indiana Jones film trilogy and a childhood crush on Harrison Ford.[7] In 1984, at the age of seven, her family settled down in suburban Lansdale, Pennsylvania northwest of Philadelphia, where her parents still reside. Weil has described herself as an average student who focused more on her budding acting career than her studies.[8]

Weil traveled frequently to New York City for professional auditions and acted in productions both off-Broadway and in Philadelphia's theatrical community before pursuing her film and television career. A 1995 graduate of North Penn High School, she graduated in the summer rather than the regular term due to her acting commitments.[9][10] Her first appearance on network television was in a 1995 episode of the New York-based CBS soap opera As the World Turns, where she played an unnamed student in a science class.[11]


Weil continues to be active in the Los Angeles theatrical community during hiatuses, is a regular performer at the Ojai Playwrights Conference in early August and radio dramas with L.A. Theatre Works, and still occasionally performs in live theater in Philadelphia and New York City. She has acted with every member of her family; in 2004, she headlined with her father in a well-received community theater production of Proof at the Montgomery Theater in Souderton, Pennsylvania, just north of her adopted hometown of Lansdale. Her first ever television role in 1994, which was an episode of The Adventures of Pete & Pete called "Yellow Fever", found her playing a bully alongside her mother Lisa, who played a teacher (she would also play a second role later in the series as a love interest to Big Pete in the episode "35 Hours"). Her younger sister Samantha shared the screen with Liza in Gilmore Girls' third-season finale, "Those Are Strings, Pinocchio". Samantha Weil played a student named Bernadette (who was unrelated to Paris) making a video yearbook entry in front of an impatient Paris, who is standing off to the side waiting to make her own entry.

An alumna of Columbia University, Weil received her first major feature film role co-starring with Kevin Bacon in Stir of Echoes. Before that role, she starred in the 1998 independent film, Whatever. Her first film was the 1996 short film, A Cure For Serpents, where she played a daughter of a mysophobic woman bringing home a boyfriend who was not as obsessive with cleanliness. She also appeared in several other short and feature-length independent films, such as Motel Jerusalem, Scar, and Lullaby. After her work in Whatever and Stir of Echoes, Warner Bros. signed Weil to a talent holding deal and she moved to Los Angeles, where she guest-starred on series produced by that studio, including ER and The West Wing, before being cast on Gilmore Girls.[12]

Weil was originally considered for the role of Rory Gilmore by Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino before Alexis Bledel won the role; the character of Paris Geller was created especially for Weil.[10]

In 2006, Weil was featured in the horror themed short film, Grace, in which her character suffers a miscarriage, yet decides to carry the baby to term with terrifying results. The film, which also featured Brian Austin Green, premiered at the Fangoria Weekend of Horrors convention on June 2, 2006, and is the basis for the 2009 feature film of the same name.[13] She also had a minor role as a humane society worker in the Molly Shannon film Year of the Dog, and appeared as Doris Delay in the 2008 biographical film Neal Cassady, and as a reporter in the 2010 live-action rotoscoping film Mars.

Weil also voiced a public service announcement in support of the American Diabetes Association's Step Up to Fight Diabetes staircase climb event, which took place in Center City Philadelphia on October 20, 2007.

In 2009, Weil returned to her roots as a regular guest star in various television series, including appearances in Eleventh Hour, CSI, In Plain Sight, Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice and in February 2010 began a run as Dr. Glass on the popular Internet series Anyone But Me; series creator Susan Miller officiated at Weil's wedding to Paul Adelstein in 2006.[14]

In March 2011, Weil was cast as Amanda Tanner, a White House aide, in ABC's Scandal, a series written and produced by Shonda Rhimes.[15][16][17] Weil had a recurring role in the series' first season.[15]

Weil played a supporting role in the horror film Smiley, and started 2013 as a recurring guest star in the last half of the only season of Amy Sherman-Palladino's ABC Family series Bunheads as Milly, the sister of Truly Stone.[18]

She is also a frequent collaborator of independent film director Noah Buschel, having appeared in most of his work. She co-produced and starred in his 2014 low-budget project The Situation is Liquid.[19]

In February 2014, Weil was cast as Bonnie Winterbottom, an assistant to Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) in the ABC series How to Get Away with Murder,[20] which premiered during the 2014–15 television season.[21] She also reprised her role as Paris Geller in the "Winter" and "Spring" episodes of the Netflix revival series Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life.[22]

In 2019, it was revealed that Weil would appear in the third season of the Amazon Prime Video series The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel as Carole Keen (a character created in tribute to bass guitarist Carol Kaye, though Kaye voiced objections to the overall character and portrayal[23]), making that series Weil's third collaboration with the Palladinos.[24][25]

In early 2022, she began recurring as FBI agent Katherine Russo in the Fox series The Cleaning Lady.[26]

Personal life[edit]

Weil married actor Paul Adelstein in a Reform Jewish ceremony in November 2006.[27] They had previously known each other through theatrical projects.[28] The two went on to appear together in three film projects: the short film Order Up (2007), the Gregory Dark-helmed Little Fish, Strange Pond (2008), and The Missing Person (2008). She also appeared in a 2011 episode of Private Practice, although she and Adelstein had no scenes together. In April 2010, the couple had a daughter, Josephine Elizabeth Weil-Adelstein.[29][30] Weil filed for divorce from Adelstein in March 2016,[31] citing irreconcilable differences. The divorce was finalized in November 2017.[32]

Weil dated her Murder co-star Charlie Weber from mid-2016 to February 2019.[33]

Weil is left-handed and a natural brunette.[34] Her niece is child actress Scarlett Estevez.[35]



Year Title Role Notes
1996 A Cure for Serpents Short Film
1998 Whatever Anna Stockard
1999 Stir of Echoes Debbie Kozac
2002 Dragonfly Suicide Girl
Lullaby Rane
2006 Grace Madeline Matheson Short film
2007 Year of the Dog Trishelle
Order Up Hippie Patron Short film
Neal Cassady Doris Delay
2008 Mars Jewel
2009 Little Fish, Strange Pond Norma Direct-to-DVD
The Missing Person Agent Chambers
2012 Advantage: Weinberg Sylvia Weinberg Voice role; short film
Smiley Dr. Jenkins
2021 Women Is Losers Minerva


Year Title Role Notes
1994 The Adventures of Pete & Pete Bully
Margie Corsell
2 episodes
1995 As the World Turns Student 1 episode
2000 The West Wing Karen Larson Episode: "Take out the Trash Day"
2000–02 ER Samantha Sobriki 3 episodes
2000–07 Gilmore Girls Paris Geller 96 episodes
2001 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Lara Todd Episode: "Tangled"
2009 Eleventh Hour Ashley Filmore Episode: "H2O"
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Risa Parvess Episode: "A Space Oddity"
In Plain Sight Angela Atkins Episode: "Gilted Lily"
Grey's Anatomy Alison Clark Episode: "Here's to Future Days"
2010 Anyone But Me Dr. Glass Web series; 4 episodes
2011 Private Practice Andi Episode: "Two Steps Back"
2012 Scandal Amanda Tanner 6 episodes
2013 Bunheads Milly Stone 6 episodes
2014–20 How to Get Away with Murder Bonnie Winterbottom Main role; 90 episodes
2016 Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life Paris Geller 3 episodes
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon Guest with Scott Patterson and Sean Gunn November 22, 2016
2019 The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Carole Keen 4 episodes
2022 The Cleaning Lady Katherine Russo recurring role
2022 Westworld Deborah 2 episodes


  1. ^ "Today's top celebrity birthdays list (June 5, 2018)". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  2. ^ Saunders, Geraldine (June 5, 2018). "Omarr's daily astrological forecast, For release 06/05/18 for 06/05/18". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  3. ^ "Liza Weil on Twitter: "Hey all you lovely people. Your birthday wishes made today perfect. Thank you one and all!"". Twitter. June 5, 2017. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  4. ^ "Liza Weil on Twitter: "Deeply appreciate all the birthday wishes today. You guys are aces. Thank you."". Twitter. June 6, 2016. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  5. ^ Orley, Emily (September 17, 2014). "The Actress Behind Paris Geller Is All Grown Up". BuzzFeed. Retrieved September 17, 2014.
  6. ^ Miller, Gerri (September 19, 2014). "The new year brings viewers new T.V. shows". The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles. Retrieved September 20, 2014.
  7. ^ Profile, Boston Globe; accessed November 4, 2014.
  8. ^ North Penn's Weil fitting in as just one of the 'Girls' Archived November 18, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, by Ellen Gray of The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 9, 2002
  9. ^ Porter, Kevin; Adejuyigbe, Demi (September 14, 2015). "Gilmore Guys: Gilmore Gabs – Liza Weil". Gilmore Guys. HeadGum. Retrieved October 5, 2015.
  10. ^ a b McGroarty, Cynthia J. (July 4, 2004). "In play, father-daughter day TV actress Liza Weil has always been around theater, thanks to her dad". Retrieved June 11, 2013.
  11. ^ "Liza Weil On As The World Turns 1995 - They Started On Soaps - Daytime TV (ATWT)". clip from 1995 episode of As The World Turns. CBS, Radio and television production via "They Started On Soaps" YouTube channel. January 25, 2020. Archived from the original on December 22, 2021. Retrieved February 24, 2020.
  12. ^ Hirway, Hrishikesh; Malina, Joshua (June 29, 2016). "1.13: Take Out the Trash Day (with Senator Bob Casey and Liza Weil)". The West Wing Weekly. Retrieved July 17, 2016.
  13. ^ Fangoria – America's Horror Magazine Archived October 24, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ "Anyone But Me Anything But Unpopular with 2.2M Views, Gilmore Girls Star Joining Cast". January 28, 2010. Retrieved May 9, 2012.
  15. ^ a b "Everyone has secrets, but only Olivia Pope can make them go away, on the series premiere of ABC's "Scandal"". The Futon Critic. March 20, 2012. Retrieved March 24, 2012.
  16. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (March 5, 2011). "Bruce Greenwood Among Latest ABC Pilot Castings". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved May 9, 2012.
  17. ^ "ABC Cancels 7 Shows, Renews 'Happy Endings', Orders 12 New Shows". May 13, 2011. Retrieved May 9, 2012.
  18. ^ Ng, Philiana (November 5, 2012). "'Bunheads' Sets Another 'Gilmore Girls' Reunion". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 21, 2012.
  19. ^ Buschel, Noah (May 29, 2014). "Without Frills". Filmmaker. Retrieved October 5, 2014.
  20. ^ "Development Update: Thursday, February 27". The Futon Critic. February 27, 2014. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
  21. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (May 8, 2014). "ABC Picks Up Shonda Rhimes 'How To Get Away With Murder', John Ridley's 'American Crime', Comedy 'Black-ish' To Series". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved May 9, 2014.
  22. ^ Stedman, Alex (February 7, 2016). "'Gilmore Girls' Revival: Liza Weil Confirms She's Returning". Variety. Retrieved March 2, 2016.
  23. ^ Bailey-Millado, Rob (January 2, 2020). "Bass legend Carol Kaye blasts 'Mrs. Maisel' homage as 'slander'". NY Post. New York, NY. Retrieved January 2, 2020.
  24. ^ Connolly, Kelly (October 14, 2019). "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Season 3 Trailer Teases a Gilmore Girls Reunion". Retrieved November 5, 2019.
  25. ^ Carlin, Shannon (December 8, 2019). "Liza Weil's Mrs. Maisel Character Pays Homage To A Trailblazing Woman In Music & No One Noticed". Refinery29. Retrieved December 9, 2019.
  26. ^ Iannucci, Rebecca (December 14, 2021). "The Cleaning Lady: Fox Drama Adds HTGAWM's Liza Weil in Recurring Role". TVLine. Archived from the original on December 14, 2021. Retrieved December 14, 2021.
  27. ^ "American Jewish Life Magazine". Archived from the original on July 7, 2011. Retrieved March 1, 2015.
  28. ^ "Chicago's Paul Adelstein, a.k.a. 'Prison Break's' Kellerman, nabs a role in the 'Grey's Anatomy' spinoff". Chicago Tribune. March 8, 2007. Archived from the original on February 10, 2018. Retrieved March 11, 2007.
  29. ^ "Dr. Cooper Freedman Would Breastfeed if He Could". April 12, 2010. Retrieved May 9, 2012.
  30. ^ "Anyone But Me – Season 2 Episode 9". Archived from the original on March 2, 2012. Retrieved March 1, 2015.
  31. ^ Mizoguchi, Karen (April 4, 2016). "Shondaland Stars Liza Weil and Paul Adelstein File for Divorce". People. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  32. ^ Stone, Natalie (November 9, 2017). "Gilmore Girls' Liza Weil Finalizes Divorce from Paul Adelstein". People. Archived from the original on November 10, 2017. Retrieved February 9, 2018.
  33. ^ "How to Get Away With Murder's Charlie Weber and Liza Weil Break Up". E! News. February 21, 2019. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
  34. ^ Surf Report Web Journal - August 11, 2007 • Surf Report 8 Archived October 13, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  35. ^ "Scarlett Estevez on Twitter: "Thank you! @liza_weil is Scarlett's aunt so she's got a pretty great role model. (red heart symbol)… "". Twitter. March 19, 2018. Retrieved March 23, 2018.

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