Whoopi Goldberg is an American comedian, actress, singer-songwriter, political activist, and talk show host.
Goldberg made her film debut in The Color Purple playing Celie, a mistreated black woman in the south. She received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress and won her first Golden Globe Award for her role in the film. In 1990, she starred as Oda Mae Brown, a psychic helping a slain man find his killer in the blockbuster film Ghost. This performance won her a second Golden Globe and an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. Notable later films include Sister Act and Sister Act 2, The Lion King, Made in America, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Girl, Interrupted and Rat Race. She is also acclaimed for her roles as the bartender Guinan in and as Terry Dolittle in Jumping Jack Flash. Her latest role is the voice of ‘Stretch’ in Toy Story 3.
Goldberg has been nominated for 13 Emmy Awards for her work in television. She was co-producer of the popular game show Hollywood Squares from 1998-2004. She has been the moderator of the daytime talk show The View since 2007. Goldberg has a Grammy, seven Emmys, two Golden Globes, a Tony, and an Oscar. In addition, Goldberg has a British Academy Film Award, four People’s Choice Awards and has been honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Goldberg was born as Caryn Elaine Johnson in New York City and raised in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood, the daughter of Emma, a nurse and teacher, and Robert James Johnson, Jr., a clergyman. Goldberg has described her mother as a “stern, strong, and wise woman” who raised her as a single mother after Goldberg’s father had left the family. Goldberg’s recent ancestors migrated north from Faceville, Georgia, Palatka, Florida, and Virginia. Results of a DNA test, revealed in the 2006 PBS documentary African American Lives, traced most of her ancestry to the Papel and Bayote people of modern-day Guinea-Bissau. Her racial admixture test revealed her genetic makeup to be 92