Pauline Fossil

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Pauline Fossil
First appearance Ballet Shoes
Created by Noel Streatfeild
Portrayed by Elizabeth Morgan(1975 TV Serial),
Emma Watson(2007 Television film)
Occupation Actress
Family Petrova Fossil, Posy Fossil

Pauline Fossil is a fictional character from the 1936 children's book Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild. In the 2007 film adaption she is played by Emma Watson, and in the 1975 TV serial she is played by Elizabeth Morgan.


Pauline is the eldest of the three Fossil girls, all of whom were orphaned as infants. Professor Matthew Brown found her alone in a lifeboat when the ship he was traveling on sank. He rescued her and took her to his home in London, where he adopted her in the name of his great-niece, Sylvia Brown. She was named Pauline after the Apostle Paul, who was also rescued from the waves. With pale blonde hair and blue eyes, Pauline is considered the beauty of the family. As the eldest of the three girls, she is often the one who takes the lead in decision-making.

Pauline lived in London, England. She began attending school when she was six years old, but was forced to leave when Sylvia, as her guardian, could no longer pay the school fees. She was tutored by Dr. Jakes and Dr. Smith, who were boarders in the house of her guardian. Another boarder, Miss Theo Dane, suggested that all three girls go to the Children's Academy of Dancing and Stage Training, in order to earn an income when they became old enough to work. Pauline was enrolled with her sisters, Petrova Fossil and Posy Fossil, and when she was ten, she showed some promise in dance. However, it was her acting ability that set her apart, soon becoming the best actress in her class.

Her first role on stage was Tyltyl, in the Maeterlinck play, The Blue Bird. When she was twelve, she auditioned for her first professional role, Alice in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Due to Pauline's increasing conceit during the rehearsal process and early showings of the play, the director eventually replaced Pauline with her understudy, teaching Pauline a lesson in humility. After Alice, she became a successful theater actress, playing Peaseblossom alongside Petrova in A Midsummer Night's Dream, and the future King Edward V in Richard III.

Her performance in Richard III led to her being discovered by a film director. She screen tested for the role of Princess Henrietta of England in a film about King Charles II, but found it difficult to adapt to film after being trained for the stage. After the film, a smash hit, was released, Pauline returned to the theater for the last time, playing the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella. Because of her promising capability as Henrietta, Pauline was asked to sign a contract with a Hollywood studio, and later moved to California, accompanied by Sylvia, her guardian. Later books of Streatfeild's detail how Pauline rose to be one of Hollywood's greatest stars, particularly during the war period, and pictures of her in her films became popular souvenirs.




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