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More Whoopi Goldberg Bios & Profiles

 

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Biography #2 (for Racing Stripes)

Whoopi Goldberg began performing at age eight in New York with the Children's Program at the Hudson Guild and the Helena Rubenstein Children's Theatre. Later, she moved to the Bay Area and joined the Blake Street Hawkeyes Theatre in Berkely, partnered with David Schein. Moving shortly into solo performances, Goldberg created The Spook Show which she toured throughout the United States and Europe. It was at this 1983 performance that Whoopi caught the attention of Mike Nichols, who offered to present her in her own Broadway show. An evening of original material, written and created by Whoopi, the show opened to the Lyceum Theatre to critical acclaim, which was later taped for the HBO special Whoopi Goldberg: Direct from Broadway, and the record album of her Broadway show won a Grammy Award as Best Comedy Recording of the year in 1985.

Whoopi's Broadway show also turned out to be an audition for Steven Spielberg, who casting the film version of Alice Walker's The Color Purple. The film launched her film career and, in addition to an Academy Award nomination, earned her the 1985 Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Dramatic Motion Picture, as well as the NAACP Image Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture. Since The Color Purple, Whoopi has starred in such motion pictures as Jumpin' Jack Flash, Burglar, Fatal Beauty (for which she won a second Image Award), Clara's Heart, Ghost, The Long Walk Home (earning her a third Image Award), Soapdish, and Robert Altman's The Player. Her performance as Oda Mae Brown in Ghost - the highest grossing movie of 1990 - earned her the Academy Award for Best Actress, the Golden Globe Award, the NAACP Image Award, the British Academy (BAFTA) Award, the Movie Award, an American Comedy Award and the Saturn Award (presented by The Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films).

Her other credits include the box-office hit Sister Act which garnered her yet another Golden Globe Award nomination, and the NAACP Image Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture, in addition to winning the Image Award for Motion Picture of the Year. Her film credits also include her Image Award-nominated performance in Sarafina!, Made in America, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit and Corinna, Corinna.

She appeared in a cameo role in The Little Rascals and in the feature film, Star Trek: Generations. She went on to star in Warner Bros. Pictures' Boys on the Side, Moonlight and Valentino, Eddie and Bogus, The Associate, Ghost of Mississippi, How Stella got her Groove Back, The Deep End of the Ocean, Girl, Interrupted, Kingdom Come and Rat Race.

Whoopi commemorates the 20th anniversary of her original one-woman show with a limited engagement production on Broadway. WhoopiThe 20-Year Anniversay is currently running on Broadway at the Lyceum Theatre through January. Whoopi is also executive producer of Lifetime's Strong Medicine and its forthcoming spin-off series, as well as Nickelodeon's Whoopi's Littleburg and an upcoming series about the world of girls' soccer.

Bio courtesy Warner Bros. for "Racing Stripes" (26-Jan-2005)


Biography #3 (for Heroes of Black Comedy)

Whoopi Goldberg has won numerous awards and considerable acclaim for her work in film, television, recordings and theatre. She is equally well-known for her tireless humanitarian efforts on behalf of children, the homeless, human rights, education, substance abuse and the battle against AIDS, as well as many other causes and charities.

Born and raised in New York City, Whoopi worked in theatre and improvisation in San Diego and the Bay Area, where she performed with the Blake Street Hawkeyes theatre troupe. It was there that she created the characters that became The Spook Show and evolved into her hit Broadway show, Grammy Award-winning album and the HBO special that helped launch her career.

Whoopi made her motion picture debut in Steven Spielberg's film version of Alice Walker's The Color Purple, for which she earned an Academy Award nomination and a Golden Globe Award. Her performance in Ghost earned her the Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress. Whoopi has also appeared in such films as Jumpin' Jack Flash, Clara's Heart, The Long Walk Home, Soapdish, The Player, Sarafina!, Sister Act, Made in America, Corrina, Corrina, The Lion King, Star Trek: Generations, Boys on the Side, Eddie, Bogus, The Associate and Ghosts of Mississippi, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, Deep End of the Ocean and Girl, Interrupted. Her recent films include Kingdom Come and Rat Race, which reunited her with her Ghost director, Jerry Zucker.

On television, Whoopi appeared for five seasons on Star Trek: The Next Generation, she co-starred with Jean Stapleton in Bagdad Café and hosted her own syndicated late-night talk show, The Whoopi Goldberg Show. She appeared with Glenn Close and Bridget Fonda in the Emmy-nominated HBO drama, In the Gloaming, directed by Christopher Reeve, as well as The Wonderful World of Disney's Rogers & Hammerstein's Cinderella and A Knight in Camelot and appeared in the mini-series Alice in Wonderland and The Magical Legend of the Leprechauns."

Whoopi has also made her mark as a producer. She is executive producer and appears in the center square on King World's popular, Emmy Award-winning Hollywood Squares. Goldberg also executive produces Lifetime's Strong Medicine, which is currently the #1 drama series on cable television. In addition to the recent Lifetime Original Movie What Makes a Family, Whoopi also executive produced and starred in the highly rated TNT Original Movie, Call Me Claus and Ruby's Bucket of Blood" for Showtime starring Angela Bassett. Other upcoming producing projects include the feature films The Piano Man's Daughter and The Mao Game and the forthcoming Broadway musical, Thoroughly Modern Millie.

Whoopi has appeared on many television series and specials, including her own HBO specials, three-time host of ABC's A Gala for the President at Ford's Theatre and eight Comic Relief telecasts with Billy Crystal and Robin Williams. Whoopi received Emmy Award nominations for hosting the 66th, 68th and 71st Academy Awards telecasts.

In addition to the Oscar, the Grammy and two Golden Globe Awards, Whoopi has been honored with multiple NAACP Image Awards, numerous People's Choice Awards (including a special tribute in 1998) and an unprecedented five Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards as Favorite Movie Actress, as well as various awards and honors for her many humanitarian efforts. She was honored with Women in Film's 2001 Crystal Award and became the first woman to be honored with the prestigious Mark Twain Prize.

In 1992, Whoopi made her debut as an author with her first children's book, Alice. Her second literary endeavor, simply entitled Book, became a bestseller in the U.S. and around the world. She returned to Broadway in 1997, garnering rave reviews in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. This summer, Whoopi returned to her performing roots, on tour for the first time in over 10 years, performing one-night-only engagements across the U.S., including the famed Apollo Theater.

Whoopi has placed prints of her hands, feet and braids in the forecourt of the famed Grauman's Chinese Theatre and recently received her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, in front of the new Kodak Theatre.

Bio courtesy Comedy Central for "Heroes of Black Comedy" (25-Oct-2003)


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