Connor Paolo is perhaps best known for his stint as Eric van der Woodsen on the hit CW series Gossip Girl. Paolo played Serena van der Woodsen’s troubled younger brother, portrayed by Blake Lively. Although Eric was not a main character on the show, he was often part of major storylines that dealt with heavy issues, including depression. Despite some of the show’s darker themes, viewers enjoyed watching the opulent lives of New York’s elite Upper East Side residents.
In 2011, at the Television Critics Association press tour, Paolo announced that he was leaving “Gossip Girl” after four seasons, per Us Weekly. At the time, he revealed he was focusing on a new role, explaining, “I don’t know if I’ll be able to come back on ‘Gossip Girl,'” adding, “That’s a question for the creators of both indicates.”
As for his character, Paolo shared, “Eric is going to college and he’s going to stay there. He doesn’t come home for Christmas anymore.”
Connor Paolo’s next appearance was short-lived
After leaving Gossip Girl, Connor Paolo’s next appearance was on ABC’s Revenge. In a 2011 interview with The TV Addict, the actor revealed the timing was right to take on a bigger role, adding that he was ready to take the plunge into portraying an older character. “I’m no longer dealing with high school and I’ve gotten to a point where I can fully devote myself to a show,” he told the outlet.
Paolo’s role as Declan was also a notable departure from his previous role as Eric. Declan was a middle-class young man struggling to help his older brother make ends meet with their bar in the Hamptons. Paolo told Seventeen that playing Declan wasn’t too difficult for him. “[It’s] just another part. A character in the Gossip Girl world is a bigger jump for most people than playing a working class kid from the city. I think it’s easier to relate to people who are just trying to make a living and work day to day,” he shared.
Despite his apparent enthusiasm for the role, Paolo left “Revenge” after his character Declan was killed off during the season 2 finale. However, it seems as if it had gone to Paolo, he would have stayed. “Connor wasn’t happy. But he also took it like a champ,” Paolo’s “Revenge” co-star Nick Wechsler told TV Guide (via HuffPost). “I think in a way he was preparing for it because he knew he wasn’t going to be used that much.”
Connor Paolo is a multi-talent
After “Revenge,” Connor Paolo appeared in a few movies, including “Friend Request” and “Outlaw” (via IMDb). In 2020, Paolo reunited with his former Revenge co-star Emily VanCamp on Fox’s The Resident. That same year, Paolo showed other skills when he wrote his first short, Monsters and Muses, according to US Weekly. The film made the finalist list in the Indie Short Fest 2021 category at the Los Angeles International Film Festival. Paolo is also a singer-songwriter and showcases his talent on his Instagram page.
As for his Gossip Girl roots, Paolo told The Hollywood Reporter in 2012 that he’s still in touch with Taylor Momsen, who played Jenny Humphrey. “She’s been one of my really close friends for years,” he told the outlet. He went on to say that if he were ever to direct the film, he would make sure to work with his former Gossip Girl actress again. “If I’m ever able to cast or put something together, she’s always at the top of my list. I think they are great.”
As of this writing, Paolo is still actively collecting acting credits, with several projects in various stages of production.