What can you tell me about the actress who plays Irene Adler in the new BBC version of Sherlock Holmes?
—Cookie Dunawitz, Little Rock, Ark.
That’s British actress Lara Pulver, 31, whom you also may recognize from her role as Claudine Crane on True Blood.
Pulver was born and raised in Kent, England, and received a degree in drama from the National Youth Music Theatre. She has performed in several London musicals, receiving the Laurence Olivier Award nomination for her portrayal of Lucille Frank in Parade at The Donmar Warehouse, which she reprised at The Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles to critical acclaim.
She made her TV debut in the U.K. in the BBC version of Robin Hood, followed by the aforementioned role in HBO’s True Blood and MI-5, before landing the role of Irene Adler—the only woman to ever interest Sherlock Holmes—in the updated Sherlock, now airing on PBS.
While not a rabid Holmes fan, Pulver had read a few of the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle books in high school.
“When I was reading the script for Sherlock, I was actually flying back from the U.K. to L.A., and I remember thinking it was just the best piece of writing that I’d read in a long time. I think Steven Moffat is a genius, and he beautifully encapsulates Conan Doyle’s legend and subtly and wittily and brilliantly brings it to life in this modernday world.”