Lucy Punch (born 30 December 1977) is an English actress. She has appeared in films such as Ella Enchanted, Hot Fuzz, Bad Teacher, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, Dinner for Schmucks, and Into the Woods. She is also known for her role as Esmé Squalor in A Series of Unfortunate Events. Punch was born in Hammersmith, the daughter of Johanna and Michael Punch, who ran a market research company. She was educated privately at Godolphin and Latymer School in Hammersmith, London. She performed with the National Youth Theatre from 1993 to 1997, and began a course at University College London before dropping out to become an actress. Punch made her acting debut in a 1998 episode of The New Adventures of Robin Hood. Her other TV credits include the naive daughter of Alison Steadman's character in the short-lived series Let Them Eat Cake which starred French and Saunders. She starred as a football player in the kids TV show Renford Rejects, and played the role of victim Melissa Townsend in the 19th episode of Midsomer Murders. In 2000, Punch appeared in the film Greenfingers. Punch made her stage debut as Elaine in Terry Johnson's West End adaptation of The Graduate. She has worked at the Royal Court and Bush theatres, both in London. In 2004, Punch played receptionist Elaine Denham on Doc Martin. She left the television show The Class after appearing in 11 of the first 12 episodes. In 2006 she won the Best Actress award at the Monaco International Film Festival for her performance in Are You Ready For Love? She played murder victim and actress Eve Draper in Edgar Wright's 2007 film Hot Fuzz. Punch starred in Woody Allen's 2010 film You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger. In August 2010, she appeared in BBC Two's three part police comedy-drama Vexed. In 2011, Punch appeared in Bad Teacher, portraying sanctimonious school teacher Amy SquirrelPunch was cast as Deena Pilgrim, the female lead in the TV pilot Powers, but the role was recast. In 2016 she played Amanda, leader of the "Alpha mums" in the BBC comedy series Motherland. In 2017, Punch was cast in the role of Esmé Squalor on the second season of the Netflix comedy drama series A Series of Unfortunate Events, a role that continued through the show's third and final season. Punch resides in West Hollywood, California. She gave birth to her first child, a son in July 2015.
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