Paul Adelstein originated in Chicago, and traveled that well-tread road of so many aspiring actors: he waited tables while working toward the proverbial big break. A stint as a server at the Windy City's Café du Midi helped him put food on the table, while -- in off-hours -- he trained with John Cusack's New Crimes stage ensemble and at the Piven Theatre Workshop in Evanston. Following a one-episode appearance on television's ER (1999) and involvement in the short-lived series Cupid (1998-1999), Adelstein signed on to work for Harold Ramis, in the director's late 2000 remake Bedazzled -- and tackled multiple roles in the picture. Adelstein collaborated with the Coen Brothers and fellow ER vet George Clooney on their late 2003 divorce comedy Intolerable Cruelty, and played opposite John Travolta and Vince Vaughn in the poorly received crime comedy Be Cool (2005), then participated in two series: the 2005 Prison Break (as a federal agent) and the 2007 Private Practice (as a key member of a Santa Monica medical team). He maintained a film career by appearing in the indie films The Missing Person and Frenemy. Once Private Practice wrapped in 2013, he stayed in the Shonda Rimes family with a reccuring gig on Scandal, and also landed a series regular role on Girlfriends' Guide to Divorce.
Biography by Nathan Southern
- Graduated Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude from Bowdoin College.
- Began his acting career in theater with New Crime Productions, a company founded by John Cusack.
- Lead singer and guitarist for the band Doris.
- Cast for the role of Preston Burke in Grey's Anatomy, but had to drop out because of a filming conflict.
- Friends with Private Practice co-star Kate Walsh since the early 1990s, when they were both struggling actors.