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Scott Wolf has starred in multiple TV series, from "Party of Five" two decades ago to "The Night Shift," which returns for its third season on Wednesday.
He's a Hollywood star who doesn't live in Hollywood. Wolf, his wife and their three children make their home in Park City, where they've resided for most of the past decade.
"For years now, we've found ourselves explaining why we live in Utah," Wolf said with a laugh. "Explaining to people who can't understand that if you aren't from there, why would you be there?"
It wasn't something Wolf, who was born in Boston and grew up in New Jersey, ever planned on. But in 2006, he was added to the cast of "Everwood," and he and his new bride came to Utah, where the series was produced.
"At the time, we thought it would be eight or nine months in Utah," Wolf said. "The plan was to go back to Los Angeles, where we had been living. And then Utah happened to us.
"We fell madly in love with the place and decided to sell our house in California and make a go of it in Utah in Park City."
How does he explain the decision to live 700 miles from Hollywood in a state mostly known for Mormons and mountains?
"Obviously, it's a really beautiful place," Wolf said. "And we wound up meeting some great people who have become some of our best friends that live up in Park City. It was also a great way to kind of hibernate and just be with each other and get out of the rat race of L.A. for a little while.
"The schools are great and the older kids have made some great friends and we can ski all winter. It's a pretty great place, and we love our home up there."
Wolf and his wife, Kelly who was a member of the "Real World: New Orleans" cast in 2000 reluctantly moved back to L.A. in 2012. He was working on a Los Angeles-based series ("Perception"); she was pregnant with their second child.
But when Wolf was cast as Dr. Scott Clemmens in "The Night Shift" which is filmed in New Mexico they quickly pulled up stakes and returned to Utah.
"I found myself commuting to work regardless of where I lived, and my wife and I saw it as an opportunity to get back to Park City," he said. "We have three children now, and obviously it's a pretty incredible place to live and to raise children."
The Wolfs are the parents of 7- and 3-year-old sons and a 2-year-old daughter. And family is a priority for the actor which is one of the reasons he signed on to "The Night Shift."
"The commute is really easy. It's only an hour flight," said Wolf, expressing gratitude to the series' production team "who are aware that I've got three small kids and a wife back home who I want to see and be part of their lives as much as humanly possible.
"I've spent as much time at home as I have in New Mexico in the course of this season."
His character in "The Night Shift" is the head of trauma surgery an intense guy who often butts heads with his fellow doctors and had to adjust to working with his ex-girlfriend.
"There's a lot I like about the character," Wolf said. "He's a really stand-up kind of person. He really defends his way of doing things. But he's also proven to be a person who can learn from his mistakes. And at the end of the second season, he was revealed to be a far more vulnerable person than anybody had seen before.
"Throughout the course of Season 3, we see a guy who has had his vulnerabilities exposed and doesn't shy away from it."
Wolf isn't reluctant to express all the reasons he loves living in Utah, but he's not looking to be a spokesman for the chamber of commerce or anything like that.
"Utah is one of those best-kept-secret things and we don't need everybody to figure it out," he said. "It's a pretty special place, and we love it."
Scott D. Pierce covers TV for The Salt Lake Tribune. Email him at email@example.com; follow him on Twitter @ScottDPierce.
Season 3 of the medical drama "The Night Shift" premieres Wednesday at 9 p.m. on NBC/Ch. 5.