Julia Davis

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Julia Davis
BornJulia Charlotte L Davis
(1966-08-25) 25 August 1966 (age 52)
Lambeth, London, England
OccupationComedian, actress, writer, director
Years active1994–present
Partner(s)Julian Barratt

Julia Charlotte L Davis (born 25 August 1966) is an English comedian, actress, writer, and director. She is known for writing and starring in the BBC Three comedy Nighty Night (2004–2005) and Sky Atlantic comedies Hunderby (2012–15) and Camping (2016), which she also directed. A seven-time BAFTA TV Award nominee, she won Best Comedy Writing for Hunderby in 2013. She is also known for playing Dawn Sutcliffe in Gavin & Stacey (2007–2009). Her film roles include Love Actually (2003), Cemetery Junction (2010) and Four Lions (2010).

Early life[edit]

Davis was born in Lambeth,[1] to a secretary mother and a civil servant father,[2] and grew up in Guildford before moving at the age of 14 to Bath, Somerset.[3] After studying for a degree in English and Drama at the College of Ripon and York St John, she returned to Bath, working at Tesco, and dead-end jobs,[4] starting a comedy double-act The Sisters Of Percy with her friend Jane Roth[2] at a local theatre group. It grew to an improvisation troupe with Welsh radio DJ Rob Brydon[2] and Ruth Jones.

Radio and television[edit]

Davis's sketches sent[5] to Radio 4 led to her first commission, in 1998, Five Squeezy Pieces,[6] a BBC Radio 4 all-female sketch comedy show, with Meera Syal and Arabella Weir.[7][8][9][2] Weir introduced her to Arthur Mathews and Graham Linehan and they cast her as a regular cast member in the television sketch show, 1998's Big Train.[10] Her career was given a further boost in 1998 after she sent a tape of various characters to Steve Coogan, who invited her to write and tour with him later on his 1998 national tour.[2] Chris Morris, director of the Big Train pilot, cast her for his 1997-1999 radio series Blue Jam, its successor March-April 2000 TV show, Jam, and Brass Eye.[2] In November 2000, a British black comedy television series, written by and starring, Rob Brydon and Davis, Human Remains debuted.

Davis has appeared in many comedy television shows in the UK including I'm Alan Partridge, Coming Soon,[11][12][13][14][15] Gavin & Stacey, I Am Not an Animal, Dr. Terrible's House of Horrible, Ideal and Nathan Barley.[16][17]

In 2004, Davis wrote and starred in the dark comedy Nighty Night, which returned for a second series in 2005. In more serious roles Davis has starred in productions such as the BBC's For the Love of God, The Alan Clark Diaries, Fear of Fanny, in which she played the original celebrity chef Fanny Cradock, and Persuasion, an adaptation of the Jane Austen novel.[18]

In 2009 Davis appeared, in the guise of Steve Coogan's personal assistant Debbie Bidwoden, in the TV film Steve Coogan – The Inside Story.[19]

In the last episode of The Office, she is heard on the phone as the voice of a woman from a dating agency in conversation with David Brent.[20] In 2008, she appeared on Little Britain Abroad as a Russian mail-order bride called Ivanka. In 2010, she co-wrote and co-starred in Lizzie and Sarah with Jessica Hynes. The pilot was aired in the UK on 20 March 2010 on BBC Two. It was made by Baby Cow Productions, and was noted as being even darker than Davis's previous work;[21] when the BBC did not commission the remaining episodes of the series, there were online protests.[22]

In December 2011, Davis appeared in "Fifteen Million Merits", an episode of the anthology series Black Mirror, as Judge Charity on the fictional talent show Hot Shot.[23] On 22 December 2011, she appeared as Anne Yeaman in the Christmas special and finale of the BBC Three comedy How Not to Live Your Life.[24] Davis appeared in the pilot episode of Bad Sugar, shown on Channel 4 on 26 August 2012. A full series was set to air in 2013, but was cancelled due to availability of the cast and writers.

In 2013, Davis played various characters in BBC sketch show It's Kevin and in Psychobitches on Sky Arts. In 2014, she starred in the short film The Bird and appeared in an episode of Inside No. 9 as a stage manager.

Davis created, wrote and starred in Hunderby, which aired for two series on Sky Atlantic.

In 2016, Davis wrote, directed and starred in Camping on Sky Atlantic. This was her directorial debut. She is working on a new comedy for Channel 4 called Morning Has Broken, about a struggling daytime TV host.

Podcast comedy[edit]

In 2018, Davis co-wrote the podcast comedy Dear Joan And Jericha with comedian Vicki Pepperdine.[25] The podcast satirizes agony aunts, "life coaching, female sexual health, psycho-genital counselling and sports journalism"[26]

Personal life[edit]

Davis is in a relationship with comedian Julian Barratt.[22][27] They are the parents of twins Arthur and Walter.[28]



Year Title Role
2001 The Parole Officer Insinuating Wife
2002 Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself Moira
2003 Love Actually Nancy
2004 AD/BC: A Rock Opera Ruth
2004 Sex Lives of the Potato Men Shelley
2006 Confetti Counselor
2007 Persuasion Elizabeth Elliot
2010 Come On Eileen Dee
2010 Cemetery Junction Mrs Taylor
2010 Four Lions Alice
2014 The Bird (Short Film) Mother
2016 Brakes Livy
2017 Phantom Thread Lady Baltimore


Year Title Role Notes
1998-2002 Big Train Various
2000 Jam Various
2000 Human Remains Various
2001 Brass Eye Various
2002 I'm Alan Partridge Kate Fitzgerald Episode 'Alan Wide Shut'
2004 I Am Not An Animal Clair the Rat
2004–05 Nighty Night Jill Tyrell Creator, writer
British Comedy Awards for Best New Comedy
Nominated – British Academy Television Award for Best Comedy Performance
Nominated – British Comedy Award for Best Female Actress
2005 Nathan Barley Honda Poppet
2006 Fear of Fanny Fanny Cradock TV Movie
2006 Little Britain Abroad Ivanka
2007–09 Gavin & Stacey Dawn Sutcliffe 7 episodes
2008 Ideal Dawn 1 episode
2010 Lizzie and Sarah Lizzie/Faith Pilot
2011 Black Mirror Judge Charity Episode "Fifteen Million Merits"
2011 How Not To Live Your Life Anne Yeaman 1 episode
2012–15 Hunderby Dorothy Creator, writer
British Academy Television Craft Award for Best Comedy Writing (2013)
British Comedy Awards for Best New Comedy Programme
British Comedy Award for Best Sitcom
Nominated – British Academy Television Award for Best Female Comedy Performance (2013)
Nominated – British Academy Television Award for Best Situation Comedy (2013)
Nominated – British Academy Television Craft Award for Best Comedy Writing (2016)
2013 It's Kevin Various
2013 Psychobitches Various Series 1
2014 Inside No. 9 Felicity Episode "The Understudy"
2016 Camping Fay Creator, writer, director
Pending – British Academy Television Award for Best Scripted Comedy (2017)
Nominated – British Academy Television Craft Award for Best Comedy Writing (2017)
2017 Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams Sally Episode: "Crazy Diamond"
2018 Sally4Ever Emma Creator, writer, director


  1. ^ "Results for Julia C Davis, 1966 quarter 3". Find my past co.uk.
  2. ^ a b c d e f Burkeman, Oliver (10 August 2012). "Julia Davis: laughing in the dark". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  3. ^ Gilbert, Gerard (25 August 2012). "Julia Davis: 'I don't want to offend anyone'". The Independent.
  4. ^ Rees, Jasper (28 March 2004). "A comic monster for our times". Retrieved 11 November 2018 – via www.telegraph.co.uk.
  5. ^ Billen, Andrew (11 April 2016). "Julia Davis: 'The snogging scene was like making porn, except we made it look funny'". Retrieved 11 November 2018 – via www.thetimes.co.uk.
  6. ^ "..: Five Squeezy Pieces :." www.britishcomedy.org.uk. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  7. ^ Jeffries, Stuart (17 December 2004). "'I am drawn to extremes'". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  8. ^ "Something of the night". 11 November 2018. Retrieved 11 November 2018 – via www.thetimes.co.uk. This led to her being cast in the all-female sketch show Five Squeezy Pieces in ...
  9. ^ Delaney, Sam (3 January 2004). "Interview: comedy writer Julia Davis". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  10. ^ Gibsone, Harriet (22 October 2018). "Julia Davis: 'I'm worried there's going to be a backlash'". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  11. ^ "Coming Soon: Part 1 - Catalogue - Live Art Development Agency". Live Art Development Agency. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  12. ^ "Coming Soon[01/07/99] (1999)". bfi.org.uk. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  13. ^ Sweeting, Adam (18 June 1999). "A screen full of nothing". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  14. ^ "Required reading". independent.co.uk. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  15. ^ "Coming Soon". Retrieved 11 November 2018 – via imdb.com.
  16. ^ Julia_Davis_Curriculum_Vitae.pdf
  17. ^ "Julia Davis". Independent Talent. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  18. ^ Boyle, Laura (18 July 2011). "Almost Persuaded: ITV's Persuasion". Jane Austen Centre.
  19. ^ "Steve Coogan - The Inside Story - BBC2 Factual". British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
  20. ^ Harvey, Chris (27 August 2012). "Julia Davis on Hunderby, Sky Atlantic: 'My horror of cruelty is why I write about it.'". The Daily Telegraph.
  21. ^ Nicholson, Rebecca (18 March 2010). "Lizzie and Sarah: has the BBC lost its nerve over this dark comedy?". The Guardian.
  22. ^ a b Morgan, Eleanor (10 April 2010). "Dark star: Julia Davis". The Guardian.
  23. ^ "Black Mirror Episode 2 - 15 Million Merits". Channel 4. Retrieved 14 November 2014.
  24. ^ "Its a Don-derful Life". BBC. Retrieved 14 November 2014.
  25. ^ Bakare, Lanre; Davies, Hannah J.; Fernando, Shehani; Slaney, Rowan (29 June 2018). "Dear Joan and Jericha: agony aunts of the most ribald kind – podcasts of the week". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  26. ^ "Dear Joan and Jericha (Julia Davis and Vicki Pepperdine) by Hush Ho, Pepperdine Productions and Dot Dot Dot Productions on Apple Podcasts". Apple Podcasts. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
  27. ^ Walker, Tim (5 November 2010). "Julia Davis: TV executives crush comedy". The Telegraph.
  28. ^ Dickens, Andrew. "Interview: Julia Davis". Stylist. Retrieved 14 November 2014.

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