Vanessa started her acting career in a series of hugely successful theatre roles from Shakespeare to Arthur Miller, achieving rave reviews and for which she was nominated for the Ian Charleson Award for three consecutive years.
She was described as “a significant new talent” by The Guardian and “a star if ever I saw one” by The Independent. Vanessa made her TV debut in 2011 in THE HOUR alongside Ben Whishaw and Dominic West, and then went on to play Estella in the BBC’s adaption of GREAT EXPECTATIONS alongside Ray Winstone and Gillian Anderson. In late 2012, Vanessa played Masha in Critic’s Circle winner THREE SISTERS at the Young Vic, again earning rave reviews, with Time Out stating “In a super cast given licence to shine, Kirby stands out.”
Vanessa then went on to star Richard Curtis’s film ABOUT TIME alongside Rachel McAdams and Domnall Gleeson and EVEREST alongside Jake Gyllenhaal and Keira Knightley, which opened the 2015 Venice Film Festival. Vanessa also filmed THE DRESSER, a BBC Two one-off drama starring Anthony Hopkins and Sir Ian McKellan. That year, Vanessa also won Best Supporting Actress at the WhatsOnStage awards for her role as Stella in A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE, alongside Gillian Anderson and Ben Foster, which transferred to Broadway after its successful run at the Young Vic .
Vanessa was then back on stage playing Elena in critically acclaimed UNCLE VANYA at The Almeida Theatre, where Matt Trueman of Variety calling her “the outstanding stage actress of her generation, capable of the most unexpected choices”.
In 2016, Vanessa played Princess Margaret alongside Claire Foy and Matt Smith in the highly anticipated Netflix series THE CROWN. The hit series won THE CROWN a Golden Globe for Best Drama TV series in 2017. Vanessa was also nominated for Supporting Actress at the British Academy Television Awards 2017 for her role as Princess Margaret.
The award winning second series will be released worldwide on 8th December 2017. This series will follow Princess Margaret’s tempestuous love life, as it continues to unfold with photographer Antony Armstrong-Jones. Vanessa’s performance is set to be a stand out having already been quoted as “the one to watch” by The Evening Standard.
Next year, Vanessa will star in MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 6 alongside Tom Cruise, Henry Cavill and Rebecca Ferguson. The film is set for release in the US on 27th July 2018.