Elizabeth Debicki has had a varied eclectic career, all the more remarkable considering she is still only 30 years old. With roles on in Television series like the John Le Carre smash The Night Manager and blockbusters including Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol 2, The Great Gatsby, Christopher Nolan’s Tenet and her forthcoming role as Princess Diana in the fifth Series of The Crown.
To coincide with the digital release of The Burnt Orange Heresy (available to Rent on Digital today) opposite Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger, it seems an appropriate time to revisit some of her finest roles to date.
Debicki’s role as Jed in The Night Manager has proved to be one of her breakout roles and certainly one that has garnered acclaim. Acting opposite heavyweights Tom Hiddleston, Hugh Laurie, Tom Hollander and Olivia Colman, Debicki more than holds her own as the feisty girlfriend of arms dealer Dicky Roper who seeks a way out of his dangerous lifestyle. Debicki gives the role more humanity than the Le Carre novel and makes Jed one of the ensembles more interesting characters with superb chemistry with its leading man Hiddleston. It is perhaps a shame the role followed so hotly on the heels of role in spy caper The Man From UNCLE and that her role closely resembles that of her character in Tenet.
The highest grossing film of Debicki’s career to date is 2017’s Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol 2. Debicki plays the secondary antagonist Ayesha whose sovereign have interactions with the Guardians throughout the course of the film. While this role is relatively slight, Debicki makes the most of her screen time fully committing to the absurdity of the character and painted gold, delivering a sense of evil while having room for the trademark blend of MCU humour. Based on the post-credits scene at the end of Vol 2, it would seem likely that we will see more of Debicki in the upcoming Vol 3, whether again as a secondary villain or perhaps more of a central role.
Guy Richie’s 2015 adaptation of the 1960s TV Serial The Man From UNCLE has proved a huge hit with fans in the years since its release maintaining the suave style of the original series and Richie’s distinctive style. Debicki featured prominently as Victoria Vinciguerra, one of the film’s villains involved in a scheme to create nuclear weapons. Debicki embodies the class and style of the 60s in this role and has some fine chemistry with Henry Cavill, Alicia Vikander and the rest of the ensemble cast. It is great to see her have such fun in this sort of role which she isn’t given the opportunity to do in The Night Manager or Tenet particularly.
It would be remiss not to mention Christopher Nolan’s Tenet which was released in August 2020 in the UK as this is one of Debicki’s best known roles. As the lead female role in the piece Debicki’s role as the unhappy wife of an arms dealer is similar to her role as Jed, however her role as Kat in Tenet is central to the film’s plot and the efforts to bring down her husband Andrei Sator and prevent a nuclear holocaust. While there have been some complaints about the writing of Kat and how expositive her character is, Debicki does a fine job with perhaps a role that could have been developed further.
Debicki’s career to date has been an eclectic mix of blockbuster films, arthouse style roles and television series. With the coveted role of Princess Diana in the forthcoming fifth series of The Crown we can expect Debicki to feature prominently stepping into the shoes of Emma Corrin. We can expect Debicki to be one of the leads as the show reaches the end of Charles and Diana’s relationship and based on previous series perhaps Debicki might find herself in awards contention.