Liza Weil

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Liza Weil
Liza Weil (cropped).jpg
Weil at a Warner Bros. Television event celebrating the 100th episode of her series Gilmore Girls, 2005
Born Liza Rebecca Weil
(1977-06-05) June 5, 1977 (age 38)
Passaic, New Jersey, U.S.
Years active 1984–present overall,
1993–present professionally
Spouse(s) Paul Adelstein (m. 2006)
Children Josephine Adelstein

Liza Rebecca Weil (born June 5, 1977) is an American actress. She is known for her role as Paris Geller in The WB series Gilmore Girls. She is also known for her recurring role as White House aide Amanda Tanner in the first season of the ABC series Scandal and currently as law assistant Bonnie Winterbottom in the ABC series How to Get Away with Murder.

Early life[edit]

Weil was born in Passaic, New Jersey, into an acting family.[1] She was raised in, and continues to practice, Reform Judaism.[2]

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.[3] In 1984, at the age of seven, her family settled down in suburban Lansdale, Pennsylvania, where her parents continue to reside. Weil was a self-avowed average student in high school who focused more on her budding acting career than her studies.[4]

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. She is a 1995 graduate of the borough's North Penn High School, graduating in the summer rather than the regular term due to her acting commitments.[5][6]


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. 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. Her younger sister Samantha shared the screen with Liza in Gilmore Girls's third season finale, "Those Are Strings, Pinocchio". Samantha Weil played a student named Bernadette (who was unrelated to Paris) making out a video yearbook entry in front of an impatient Paris, standing off to the side waiting to make her own.

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 was the star of the 1998 independent film Whatever, and her first film in 1996 was the short film A Cure For Serpents, where she played the daughter of a mysophobic woman bringing home a boyfriend who was not as obsessive with cleanliness, and how the mother deals with the challenge. She has also done several other short and feature-length independent films, which include Motel Jerusalem, Scar, and Lullaby, and shown interest in behind-the-camera work.

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.[6]

Post Gilmore-Girls work[edit]

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.[7] 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, which is currently on the film festival circuit.

Weil also voiced a public service announcement which aired from June–October 2007 and aired on radio stations in Philadelphia and the Delaware Valley 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.[8]

In March 2011 it was confirmed that Weil had signed for the role of Amanda Tanner, a White House aide, in ABC's Scandal, a series written and produced by Shonda Rhimes.[9][10] It was picked up by the network for their midseason 2011-12 schedule on May 13, 2011,[11] and Weil had a recurring role in the series' first season.[9]

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.[12] She is also a constant collaborator with independent film director Noah Buschel, having appeared in most of his work through the years and co-producing and starring in the 2014 low-cost project The Situation is Liquid.[13]

Current work[edit]

At the end of February 2014, Weil was confirmed as signing on for another Shonda Rhimes series project, being cast as Bonnie Winterbottom, an assistant to Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) in the ABC series How to Get Away with Murder,[14] which premiered at the start of the 2014–15 season on September 25, 2014.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Weil married actor Paul Adelstein in a Reform Jewish ceremony in November 2006.[16] They had previously known each other through theatrical projects.[17] The two have since acted together in three film projects, the 2007 short Order Up, the 2008 Gregory Dark-helmed Frenemy, and The Missing Person. She also appeared in an episode of Private Practice on February 24, 2011,[18] although she and Adelstein had no scenes together.

Weil became pregnant in mid-2009 with her and Adelstein's first child, a girl named Josephine Elizabeth Weil-Adelstein, born April 20, 2010.[19][20] Previously in 2006 she became an aunt, when her sister Samantha gave birth to a child after she moved to the Los Angeles area.[21]

Weil is left-handed, and a natural brunette. It is believed[by whom?] she was told to dye it dark-blonde for her Gilmore Girls role to contrast with Bledel/Rory's brown hair. After the series, she went back to her original brown hair color,[22] though she has subsequently returned to being a blonde. Amy Sherman-Palladino has complimented Weil's skin as "the best she's ever seen in her life".[23]



Year Title Role Notes
1997 A Cure for Serpents Lucy short film
1998 Whatever Anna Stockard
1999 Stir of Echoes Debbie Kozac
2002 Dragonfly Suicide Girl
2002 Lullaby Rane
2006 Affair Game Wife short film
2006 Grace Madeline Original 2006 short film;
role was recast for Jordan Ladd in latter 2009 feature-length film
2007 Year of the Dog Trishelle
2007 Order Up Hippie Patron short film
2007 Neal Cassady Doris Delay
2008 Mars Jewel
2009 Frenemy Norma direct-to-DVD
2009 The Missing Person Agent Chambers
2009 Us One Night Rebecca short film
2010 Metronome Michelle short film
2011 A Glove Story Claire short film
2012 Smiley Dr. Jenkins


Year Title Role Notes
1994 The Adventures of Pete & Pete Bully
Margie Corsell
Episodes: "Yellow Fever" and "35 Hours"
2000 The West Wing Karen Larson Episode: "Take out the Trash Day"
2000, 2002 ER Samantha Sobriki Episodes: "All in the Family", "The Fastest Year", "Beyond Repair"
2000–2007 Gilmore Girls Paris Geller Recurring (Season 1)
Main Cast (Season 2–7): 127 episodes
2001 Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Lara Todd Episode: "Tangled"
2009 Eleventh Hour Ashley Filmore Episode: "H20"
2009 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation Risa Varness Episode: "A Space Oddity"
2009 In Plain Sight Angela Episode: "Gilted Lily"
2009 Grey's Anatomy Allison Clark Episode: "Here's to Future Days"
2010 Anyone But Me Dr. Glass web series[8]
2011 Private Practice Andi Episode: "Two Steps Back"
2012 Scandal Amanda Tanner Recurring role, 6 episodes
2013 Bunheads Milly Stone Recurring role, 6 episodes
2014–present How to Get Away with Murder Bonnie Winterbottom Series regular


  1. ^ Orley, Emily (September 17, 2014). "The Actress Behind Paris Geller Is All Grown Up". BuzzFeed. Retrieved September 17, 2014. 
  2. ^ Miller, Gerri (19 September 2014). "The new year brings viewers new T.V. shows". The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles. Retrieved September 20, 2014. 
  3. ^ Profile, Boston Globe; accessed November 4, 2014.
  4. ^ North Penn's Weil fitting in as just one of the 'Girls', by Ellen Gray of The Philadelphia Inquirer, December 9, 2002
  5. ^ Porter, Kevin; Adejuyigbe, Demi (14 September 2015). "Gilmore Guys: Gilmore Gabs - Liza Weil". Gilmore Guys podcast. HeadGum. Retrieved 5 October 2015.  Cite uses deprecated parameter |coauthors= (help)
  6. ^ 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. 
  7. ^ Fangoria - America's Horror Magazine
  8. ^ a b "Anyone But Me Anything But Unpopular with 2.2M Views, Gilmore Girls Star Joining Cast — Online Video News". 2010-01-28. Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  9. ^ a b Network press release (March 20, 2012). "Everyone has secrets, but only Olivia Pope can make them go away, on the series premiere of ABC's "Scandal"". ABC MediaNet, via The Futon Critic. Retrieved March 24, 2012. 
  10. ^ Andreeva, Nellie. "Bruce Greenwood Among Latest ABC Pilot Castings". Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  11. ^ "ABC Cancels 7 Shows, Renews 'Happy Endings', Orders 12 New Shows". 2011-05-13. Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  12. ^ Ng, Philiana (5 November 2012). "'Bunheads' Sets Another 'Gilmore Girls' Reunion". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 
  13. ^ Buschel, Noah (29 May 2014). "Without Frills". Filmmaker. Retrieved 5 October 2014. 
  14. ^ "Development Update: Thursday, February 27". The Futon Critic. February 27, 2014. Retrieved March 7, 2014. 
  15. ^ 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". Retrieved May 9, 2014. 
  16. ^ "American Jewish Life Magazine". Retrieved March 1, 2015. 
  17. ^ "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. 
  18. ^ "Private Practice" Two Steps Back (TV episode 2011) - IMDb. Retrieved March 20, 2011.
  19. ^ Warner Bros. Online (2010-04-12). "Dr. Cooper Freedman Would Breastfeed if He Could". Retrieved 2012-05-09. 
  20. ^ "Anyone But Me - Season 2 Episode 9". Retrieved March 1, 2015. 
  21. ^ "Liza Weil Exclusive Interview - The Star Scoop". Retrieved October 4, 2015. 
  22. ^ Surf Report Web Journal - 8-11-07 • Surf Report 8
  23. ^ "Entertainment–I do... NOT know if Lorelai marries Luke–Seattle Times Newspaper". [dead link]

External links[edit]