Who is Vinessa Shaw?

Vinessa is an American actress known for her roles in various films and TV series. Some of her notable appearances include “Eyes Wide Shut” (1999) as Domino, “Hocus Pocus” (1993) as Allison, “3:10 to Yuma” (2007), in which she played Emma Nelson, and “Ray Donovan” (2010) as Kate McPherson, in addition to numerous other notable appearances she has had in her career.

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What is Vinessa Shaw Doing Now?

After appearing in an episode of the TV series “Swagger” (2022) as Diane, Vinessa is now working on the upcoming thriller film “PH-1”, directed by Mark Kassen and co-stars Jesse L. Martin and Rebecca Amzallag. The film is currently in post-production and is yet to receive a premiere date.

Vinessa Shaw Wiki: Age, Childhood, and Education

Vinessa Elizabeth Shaw was born on 19 July 1976, in Los Angeles, California, USA, the daughter of actress Susan Damante and Larry Shaw, a psychologist who also served as an adjunct professor of psychology at Antioch University. Before officially making it into the acting world, Vanessa performed at the age of 10 at a University of  California, Los Angeles (UCLA) acting camp and toured with children’s folk singer Peter Alsop the following year. She also worked as a model, as she signed with the Elite Models agency in 1989.

Career Beginnings

Vinessa Shaw made her film debut in 1981’s “Home Sweet Home”, in which she portrayed Angel Bradley. The film, also known as “Slasher in the House”, revolves around a family who become the target of a serial killer during the Thanksgiving holiday, co-starring Jake Steinfeld. After this, she focused on honing her skills and returned to acting only in the ’90s.

In 1992, Vinessa Shaw took on the role of Kimberly Mullen in the film “Ladybugs”. The movie follows the story of a young boy who disguises himself as a girl to join a girls’ soccer team to help them win their league. Shaw’s character, Kimberly, is one of the team members who become involved in the humorous and heartwarming misadventures.

Rise to Prominence

Shaw’s rise to stardom came in 1993, when she portrayed Allison Watts in the Halloween family film “Hocus Pocus”. This significant role alongside Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kathy Najimy, Omri Katz and Thora Birch brought her widespread recognition and a growing fan base.

In 1999, Shaw was featured in Stanley Kubrick’s “Eyes Wide Shut” as Domino, a prostitute encountered by Tom Cruise’s character. This collaboration with Kubrick further solidified her reputation as a talented actress; the film explored themes of desire and secrecy, and Shaw’s performance captured the complex nature of her character.

Continued Success

Continuing her success, Shaw took on various roles in independent films during the early 2000s. In “The Weight of Water” (2000), alongside Sarah Polley and Sean Penn, she played Anethe Christenson, a character involved in a mystery drama. She then displayed her comedic skills as Agent Kate Russo in the slapstick comedy “Corky Romano” (2001) alongside Chris Kattan. In “40 Days and 40 Nights” (2002), she portrayed Nicole, the feisty ex-girlfriend of Josh Hartnett’s character. Shaw also appeared in Woody Allen’s “Melinda and Melinda” (2004) as Stacey, demonstrating her range as an actress.

In 2006, Shaw made a memorable return to the big screen in the remake of Wes Craven’s exploitation-horror film “The Hills Have Eyes”, directed by Alexandre Aja. She portrayed Lynn Carter, a young mother on a camping trip with her family, who becomes the target of bloodthirsty mutants in the New Mexico desert.

In 2007, Vinessa Shaw portrayed Emmy in the film “3:10 to Yuma”. Set in the American Old West, it tells the gripping story of a struggling rancher who agrees to help transport a notorious outlaw to the train station for his journey to trial, sharing the screen with Russell Crowe and Christian Bale. She also starred in the indie drama “Garden Party”, further expanding her repertoire. Shaw’s talent and versatility were recognized once again in 2008, when she took on the leading role of Sandra Cohen in “Two Lovers”, a romantic drama that premiered at the Cannes Film Festival.

In 2013, Shaw continued to impress with her performances. She had a supporting role alongside Jude Law in “Side Effects” as Dierdre Banks, playing his character’s wife. She also starred as Ann Dane in “Cold in July”.

Recent Work

Throughout her acting career, Shaw has consistently displayed her talent and range. In 2017, Vinessa Shaw portrayed Dr. Jane Mathis in the film “Clinical”, starring alongside Kevin Rahm and India Eisley. The psychological thriller follows Dr. Mathis, a psychiatrist trying to rebuild her life after a violent attack by one of her former patients. The following year, Shaw appeared in the horror thriller film “Family Blood”, in which she portrayed Ellie, co-starring alongside James Ransone and Colin Ford in this chilling tale of addiction and dark secrets. In 2021, Vinessa Shaw portrayed Alice Winter in “The Blazing World”. Directed by Carlson Young, the film explores themes of trauma, identity, and personal liberation, through a woman named Margaret (played by Carlson Young) who ventures into a surreal and dreamlike world to confront her traumatic past. Shaw’s character, Alice Winter, is a childhood friend of Margaret who also embarks on this journey of self-discovery and redemption.

The same year, Shaw took on the role of Juanita Russell in “12 Mighty Orphans”. Directed by Ty Roberts, the film is based on a true story and follows a group of orphans, who find hope and purpose through their involvement in a high school football team. Shaw’s character, Juanita Russell, is the wife of Rusty Russell (played by Luke Wilson), the coach who leads the underdog team to unexpected success. The film explores themes of perseverance, teamwork and the transformative power of sports.

Also, in 2021, Shaw appeared as Diane in the horror-thriller film “We Need to Do Something”, which directed by Sean King O’Grady, revolves around a family trapped in their bathroom during a severe storm. As tension rises and strange events occur, Diane becomes increasingly desperate to protect her family and find a way out.

Personal Life, Marriage, Husband, Children

Vinessa Shaw has been married to Kristopher Gifford since 2017. The couple began dating in 2007 and became engaged the following year. They have a son together, Jack, born in February 2018.

Appearance and Body Measurements

Vinessa Shaw has light brown hair and brown eyes. She stands at a height of 5ft 8ins (1.73m), weighs approximately 145lbs (65kgs), with vital statistics of 34-25-35, and bra size 32B.

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