PAUL TAEGEL grew up in Houston, TX, where he gorged himself on The Savage Sword of Conan and samurai, horror, and 70‘s exploitation films that he probably shouldn’t have been watching at such a young age. After earning a degree in English and Philosophy at Vanderbilt University, Paul moved to Austin, TX, where he made his living performing in children’s theater, independent films, and fruit drink commercials. Thinking he might make more money as an actor in Hollywood, Paul moved to Los Angeles. You may remember him as Soldier #2 in Days of Our Lives or the Cowardly CTU Worker that gets blown up on 24—among others.
Paul began writing screenplays after getting laid off from a hookah factory. With no legitimate source of income and little else to do in his charming Koreatown studio that boasted regular gunfights just footsteps from his door, Paul banged out a retro-futuristic spy epic, a zombie Spaghetti Western, and a slasher script about punk rockers and Mexican wrestlers. He has since burned these texts. During this golden era of his creativity, Paul also appeared on four reality shows. He has tried in vain to locate and destroy the footage. In a misguided attempt to seize the destiny of his writing career, Paul wandered into the writers’ offices of 24 where he was working as an extra and cornered the head-writer for a job. Instead of having Paul fired or pressing charges, Mr. Loceff suggested Paul apply to the MFA program at UCLA. After declining his application twice, the good people at UCLA admitted Paul into their MFA Screenwriting program in 2007.
Paul’s work has since garnered the Santa Fe Screenwriter’s Conference Actor’s Choice Award, The Jack Nicholson Screenwriting Prize, The Harmony Gold Award for Screenwriting Excellence and finalist positions in the Slamdance competition and the Disney Fellowship.
Paul’s original screenplay, Vandal, was produced and premiered at the Miami Film Festival in 2019. The 2nd starring Ryan Philippe and co-written with Eric Bromberg, completed principle photography in July 2019 and has been picked up by Netflix for distribution in 2020—release date TBD.
Paul splits time between Los Angeles and The Bay Area, where he lives with his wife and two children.