Born in Pontefract, Yorkshire, Kebbell grew up in Nottinghamshire where he attended a Catholic primary school. Kebbell's first screen time came when he was cast for the role of Anthony in the film Dead Man's Shoes. He received a Most Promising Newcomer nomination at the British Independent Film Awards, and was widely praised for his powerful, emotional portrayal of a young man with a learning disability. Kebbell made a high profile appearance alongside an all-star cast including Colin Farrell, Anthony Hopkins, Angelina Jolie, Val Kilmer, and Rosario Dawson in Oliver Stone's Alexander. Woody Allen then cast him, without a formal audition, in Match Point, based solely on his impressive performance in Dead Man's Shoes.
Kebbell's most critically acclaimed role came in the film Control in which he played Rob Gretton, manager of Joy Division in Anton Corbijn's award-winning biopic of Ian Curtis. He was selected over fellow nominees Cate Blanchett, Colin Firth and Control co-star Samantha Morton for the Best Supporting Actor Award at the British Independent Film Awards. He was also nominated for the same honor alongside Albert Finney and Tom Wilkinson from the London Critics' Circle.
Kebbell took the lead in a December 2007 episode of the BBC series The Street, which subsequently won the BAFTA for Best Drama series. Some of his other work for the BBC includes a modern retelling of Macbeth along with James McAvoy, while his theater work includes time at the Almeida in David Hare's reworking of the Maxim Gorky play "Enemies" and at the Playhouse in R. C. Sherriff's classic, Journey's End.
Kebbell was featured in the September 2008 film RocknRolla, which was written and directed by Guy Ritchie, with actors Tom Wilkinson, Gerard Butler and Thandie Newton. In it, Kebbell plays Johnny Quid, a musician who is addicted to crack. For his work in this part, he won The Sun's Best Actor award and was described as "a star of the future".
Kebbell appeared in the 2009 Stephen Frears-directed film Cheri in which he had a small role alongside actress Michelle Pfeiffer. In January 2009 Kebbell was nominated for the "Orange Rising Star Award" in the 2009 BAFTA Awards, which is voted for by the public.
|Northern Soul||Mark Sherbert|
|Dead Man's Shoes||Anthony|
|The German||A. C. Barton|
|2009||Tea and Biscuits||Billy|
|2010||Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time||Prince Dastan's brother|
|The Sorcerer's Apprentice||Drake Stone|