Adrian Paul Bio: In His Own Words
Adrian Paul is a British-born actor, director and producer most famously known for portraying the lead character of Duncan MacLeod in the American action-adventure series Highlander. He has since starred in numerous films, including spin-offs of the popular 1990s series.
Adrian Paul Bio: Age, Early Life and Career
Paul was born in London, England, on May 29, 1959 (Adrian Paul’s Age: 57) as the eldest of three brothers. As a teenager he was an avid soccer player and even made appearances in the London Spartan League in the late 1970s. Paul’s early career interests were oriented towards modeling at first and later towards dance and choreography. He travelled extensively around Europe before trying to pursue a career in the USA.
When asked about how he first got into acting, Paul told uInterview:
“I went to Hollywood. I had a friend in Hollywood… and for the next year I started taking acting classes, but I’m one who believes you have to work for it if you want to be successful at anything…
So I happened to talk into a printers to have my headshot printed, and there was this girl there saying ‘Oh, you’re English… Have you been up for Bond? But I have a great agent. If you have an agent, you should get yorur agent to do it.’ And I said ‘I don’t have an agent.’ And she goes, ‘I have a great agent for you,’ and I’m [thinking] ‘Okay, this girl is trying to hit on me.’ So I leave and I go home and about an hour later I find a message on my message machine and it’s this girl saying ‘I got you the agent. I talked to her. She’s really good…’ So I call her and said ‘Excuse me, but how did you get my number?’ She said ‘Oh, well, when you were writing it down on the sheet for the company, I took it off the sheet.’
So as luck would have it… I went and met with this agent, a lady called Lynn Rowlins… Within three months I got my first job, which was ‘The Colbys’ … It was the weirdest role because I was an English guy with an Italian background playing a Russian on an American TV series.”
After landing his first role on The Colbys, where he played a Russian dancer, Paul starred in an off-Broadway play Bouncers, in which he had to continuously switch between a total of 13 different characters, and made a guest appearance on the 1987 TV series Beauty and The Beast. In 1988, he made his film debut as well in the Donald P. Bellisario film Last Rites opposite Tom Berenger and Daphne Zuniga.
Over the next few years, he made numerous appearances on TV and starred in films like Love Potion No. 9 with Sandra Bullock, which caught the attention of Highlander producers, who asked the actor to play the role of Duncan MacLeod – his most notable appearance to date.
Adrian Paul Bio: ‘Highlander’
Highlander proved to be the biggest role in Paul’s career thus far, with which he was involved from 1992 to 1998. What he found really appealing was the many layers that he got to explore through his role in the series: history, adventure, romance. He explored new aspects of himself as an actor for the duration of the series’ 6 seasons. Paul was originally intended to take over the role of “The Highlander” from Christopher Lambert, who had played the part in the original films of the franchise. However, Paul insisted that a new character be created as the protagonist of the TV series so that he could develop his own approach to the character and avoid confusion with the legacy of Lambert’s role. Paul also tried his hand at directing for the fourth season of the show.
The series was well-received internationally and earned a widely positive critical acclaim. After the final episode of the series aired in 1998, Paul reprised his role as the protagonist in the movie spin-offs Highlander: Endgame in 2000 and Highlander: The Source in 2007. Recently, Paul shared with uInterview that there are rumours of a possible Highlander reboot in the near future, but nothing has been officially confirmed.
Adrian Paul Bio: Film and TV Career After ‘Highlander’
Paul continued to develop his acting skills by taking classes with renowned acting coach Larry Moss. Additionally, he was instrumental in founding a theater group now called Actors Collaborative (formerly Actors in Process), where actors would meet on a weekly basis to workshop their work. During those years, Paul produced and starred in his original play Things Just Change, which played at the Odyssey Theater in Los Angeles.
Meanwhile, Paul made numerous guest appearances on TV shows, since the end of his engagement in Highlander: The Series, including Tracker, Charmed and Relic Hunter in the early 2000s. Paul also continued to act on the big screen. In 2001, he shot The Breed in Budapest, Hungary, where he met his future wife Alexandra Tonelli. Some of his other film projects include: , Moscow Heat, Throttle and Tides of War.
In 2007, Paul released three films, one of which was Highlander: The Source, on which he also served as an executive producer. The other two films were the independent horror film Séance, which received several festival awards, and the sci-fi film Lost Colony. In 2009, Paul starred in another sci-fi production The Immortal Voyages of Captain Drake, in which he choreographed all fight scenes. In the same year, he filmed the horror film Nine Miles Down in Hungary and Tunisia, which he considers one of the most challenging roles he ever played. He further explored a new spectrum of his acting abilities as a Conservative member of Parliament in the 2010 action thriller The Heavy, where he played opposite Vinnie Jones, Gary Stretch, Stephen Rea and Christopher Lee.
Adrian Paul Bio: Personal Life and Recent Projects
In 1997, Paul founded the Peace Fund, a charity organization aiming to improve the living and health conditions of children around the world. He has overseen the fund’s activities in many countries around the world. In 2008, the Peace Fund paired its cause with Teachers Across Borders and Paul has additionally furthered the fund’s goals by starting a Peace Fund Radio in 2012 alongside Ethan Dettanmaeir. The show has hosted many celebrities with charitable causes of their own, which has strengthened the role and awareness of Paul’s Peace Fund.
Beyond his work as an actor, in 2010, Paul co-founded his first production company Filmblips Inc., and in 2015, he also founded his second production house, Radical Road, which aims at producing low budget films. He also recently started offering half-day training courses in stage and real life combat named “The Sword Experience,” teaching people safety tips and fight choreographies from movies. The Secret of Emily Blair, which is currently in post-production is set to be released in 2016.
He is currently married to Alexandra Tonelli. The couple has two children, Angelisa and Royce.
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