Creator / Whoopi Goldberg
"You know, be an actor because you love to act. Don't be an actor because you think you're going to get famous, because that's luck."

Whoopi Goldberg (born Caryn Elaine Johnson on November 13, 1955) is a highly successful American actress/singer/comedian. Known for tackling serious issues with a sense of humor, she became the highest-paid actress of all time during her peak in the 1990s. Whoopi's first film appearance was in the movie The Color Purple, where she garnered an Academy Award nomination and a Golden Globe for her performance as a mistreated African American woman in the Deep South. Five years later, she won both the Golden Globe and the Oscar for her performance in the blockbuster title Ghost.

Her famous roles are as foot-dragging ghost possesee Oda Mae Brown in Ghost, bartender/hat enthusiast Guinan on Star Trek: The Next Generation, and showgirl-turned-mob informant-turned-nun Sister Mary Clarence in the Sister Act films. She's also fondly remembered as the Hyena leader, Shenzi, in the animated movie The Lion King and also did voice work in Toy Story 3 as Stretch.

Her casting as Guinan came as a surprise to the public and was seen as something of a step down: Goldberg had already enjoyed success in big budget films (including a critically acclaimed turn in Steven Spielberg's The Color Purple), and was suddenly committing to a semi-regular role on television. As she explained to an equally confused Gene Roddenberry, Whoopi is an Ascended Fangirl of The Original Series, with Nichelle Nichols' role as Uhura was one of her biggest driving inspirations for becoming an actress. In the late 1990s, she served as the center square on a revival of The Hollywood Squares but later left.

She's appeared in over 150 different movies, and has won two Golden Globe Awards, an Oscar, a Grammy, a Tony, three People's Choice Awards, two American Comedy Awards, the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, and two Daytime Emmy Awards. With such a large list of films she's been in, they tend to vary from great inspirational roles like in The Color Purple, to… well, Theodore Rex.

Currently, she leads the roundtable of women that comprise The View.

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