Sadly India’s Only Oscar-Nominated Actress had to hide her identity thought out her life.
There have been various nominations for Indian origin actors at the Oscars including the recent nomination of Dev Patel for a movie “Lion”. Apart from Mehboob Khand(1958) and Dev Patel (2017), Ismail Merchant, Vidhu Vinod Chopra and KK Kapil, Bhanu Athaiya, Ravi Shankar, Mira Nair, Satyajit Ray, Ashutosh Gowarikar, Ashvin Kumar, Deepa Mehta, Resul Pookutty, A.R. Rahman, Gulzar and Bombay Jayashri have been nominated for the Oscars. But its importnat to know that first actor of Indian-origin was a woman named Merle Oberon in the early ’30s.
She was born in Mumbai by named Estelle Merle O’Brien Thompson in 1911 , and brought up by her aunt Charlotte. In 1928 she moved to England and met filmmaker Alexander Korda, who gave her first break in film ‘ The Private Life of Henry VIII’ where she was credited as Merle Oberon.
Korda and oberon fall in love and got married, later she had done number of movies , but she had been noticed in The Dark Angel and got nominated as best actress in Oscar. She never come on screen bare face as she always wanted to hide her dusky complexion. As racism was on its peak in Hollywood that time and therefore its was rumored everywhere that she belongs to Tasmania and her father was killed in a hunting accident.
She met with an accident in 1937 where is was not on screen for a long time ,later on she came back again Wuthering Heights and praised alot for her work. Her last movie was Interval in 1973 . In 1979 she got died due to stroke.
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