Childhood & Early Life
Vanessa Angel was born Vanessa Madeline Angel, on November 10, 1966, in London, England, to Peter and Elizabeth Angel. She was from an affluent family, with her father working as a stockbroker.
Ever since she was a child, Vanessa loved acting and was particularly fond of on-stage performances. Although she enjoyed performing, she never dreamed of a career in the entertainment industry.
When she was 14 years old, she was spotted by a famous modeling agent named Eileen Ford in London. She was offered a modeling job, and she instantly grabbed it. She traveled around the world, participating in modeling assignments, while also managing her academics simultaneously.
She moved up the professional ladder at the age of 16, when she was offered a contract by ‘Ford Models,’ one of the biggest modeling agencies in the US. She thus moved to New York at the age of 16 and began her career as a super model.
During her successful modeling years, she also appeared on the covers of esteemed magazines such as ‘Vogue’ and ‘Cosmopolitan.’ She was also a ‘Diet Pepsi’ brand ambassador once. This success led to a good start to her career. However, she aimed at becoming an actor and started auditioning for film and TV roles in the mid-1980s.
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She made her acting debut with the 1985 film ‘Spies Like Us.’ The comedy film had her playing an unnamed role of a Russian rocket crewperson.
After making her debut in a small role, she took 3 years to appear on screen again. This time, she made her TV debut with the series ‘The Equalizer.’ She appeared in a single episode of the series, titled ‘Video Games,’ where she essayed the role of ‘Christine Hayes.’
In 1989, she appeared as ‘Jackie Johanson,’ one of the main characters in the film ‘Another Chance.’ The soap-opera-like quality of the film was highly criticized, and the film did not even receive a proper release.
In 1991, Vanessa got a major opportunity to star in the internationally successful series ‘Baywatch.’ She appeared in three episodes of the series and portrayed the role of ‘Megan.’
While she continued to appear in guest roles in single episodes of series such as ‘On the Air,’ ‘Raven,’ and ‘Melrose Place,’ her film career was moving forward with B-films. In the 1991 film ‘Killer Instinct,’ she played the role of ‘Deborah Walker.’
In 1992, she was signed on to play a recurring role in the police-procedural series ‘Reasonable Doubts.’ She played the role of ‘Detective Peggy Elliott’ in the series for a year.
In the 1994 comedy–drama film ‘Sleep with Me,’ she played the supporting role of ‘Marianne.’ The film was a major box-office failure and also failed to impress critics.
Despite her projects failing to gain proper success, Vanessa was appreciated for the range of acting skills that she exhibited. She impressed the audiences with her comic timing.
She got her first major acting breakthrough in 1994, when she appeared as ‘Lisa,’ one of the leads in the series ‘Weird Science.’ Her role in the sitcom was that of a “magic genie” and was a little bit on the goofier side. The series was a considerable mainstream success, and so was her portrayal. She played the role until 1998.
Meanwhile, she continued to appear in films in the mid-1990s. In 1996, she earned moderate success with her portrayal of ‘Claudia’ in the sports comedy film ‘Kingpin.’ The film was a box-office success and also earned some positive reviews. This was one of the most iconic roles of her career.
In 1998, she led another major film project, titled ‘Kissing a Fool.’ In the comedy film, which starred David Schwimmer in the lead role, she played the role of ‘Natasha.’ The film performed disastrously at the box office and received bad reviews from critics, too.
Despite not achieving the desired success in films, Vanessa continued to appear in many films throughout the early 2000s, such as ‘Camouflage’ and ‘The Perfect Score.’ She also appeared in TV series such as ‘The Division.’
Many of her early roles in 2000 were for TV films, such as ‘Sabretooth,’ ‘Criminal Intent,’ and ‘Puppet Master vs Demonic Toys.’ She also made guest appearances in some popular series, such as ‘Californication’ and ‘Entourage.’
Some of her latest film appearances were in ‘Blind Ambition,’ ‘Endless Bummer,’ and ‘Hall Pass.’
In 2009, she started her clothing line, ‘VANE LA.’ Through her brand, she designed 1970s-style clothes and accessories.