Merle Oberon (born Estelle Merle O'Brien Thompson, 19 February 1911 – 23 November 1979) was an Anglo-Indian actress. She began her film career in British films as Anne Boleyn in The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933). After her success in The Scarlet Pimpernel (1934), she travelled to the United States to make films for Samuel Goldwyn. She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in The Dark Angel (1935). A traffic collision in 1937 caused facial injuries that could have ended her career, but she soon followed this with her most renowned performance in Wuthering Heights (1939).
Throughout her adult life, in order to conceal her Indian heritage she maintained the fiction that she was born in Tasmania, Australia; she concocted a story that all her school records had been destroyed in a fire, which meant it could be neither proven nor disproven. She maintained these fictions throughout her professional life. The year before she died she finally admitted this story was not true, and records located since her death have confirmed her true origin.