Whoopi Goldberg was born as Caryn Elaine Johnson on the 13th November in 1955 in New York in the State New York. She was on stage already at the young age of eight years and became a member of the New York's children's theater.
Later she would play roles in the great Broadway musicals like "Hair" or "Jesus Christ Superstar".
But Whoopi left New York to try her luck in theater groups at
the west coast, in San Diego and San Francisco.
During that time she got the idea of appearing on stage in a one-woman show in which she would change characters rapidly. Her performances were such a success, that she even took her "Spook Show" on a tour over here, to Europe.
So Whoopi became a hot performer in New York and the director
Mike Nichols produced her stage show as a television series. Those series also
were a success on video.
This caught famous Steven Spielberg's attention and he gave her the main role in her first movie, the literature classic "The Colour Purple".
She was so convincing as the farmer's wife Celie, that she even won an Oscar nomination.
Her career in Hollywood continued, but she just made comical thrillers, that were not really a challenge nor showed or needed acting talent. But she got the chance to proof her skills again in the role of Clara, an experienced domestic servant, in the drama "Clara's Heart".
Finally Whoopi succeeded in becoming a star after she played the medium Oda Mae Brown in the wonderful movie "Ghost". She played her part so good, that she won an Oscar for it.
Since her great break-through she gained the respect of serious
film critics and appeared in the gossip as well as in the financial sections of
every kind of magazine.
She earned 20 million dollars with her next two films ("The Long Walk Home", 1990, and "Soapdish", 1991) and is now one of the best paid actresses.
Whoopi also did the show mistress for the Academy Awards in 1999. I had the pity just to watch the Highlights and for the cuttings her jokes were horribly translated and TV voice overspoke her beautiful voice.
In 1994 she played the role of Guinen in the Star Trek film
"Generations", and she neither got paid nor given credit for
it! Anyway, she played Guinen again in many episodes of Star Trek: The next
In the same year the movie "The Lion King" came into the cinemas, where she was acting the voice of Shenzi, as might be known ;-)
Her german dub voice is usually Regina Lemnitz, who is doing a
good job, but nobody can replace the wonderful dark voice of the real Whoopi.
Some might be interested, that for "The Lion King" it was not Regina Lemnitz who did the voice for Shenzi in German. It was a funny entertainer called Hella von Sinnen.
This is a list of movies with Whoopi I have seen and liked:
|(1996)||as Harriet Franklin, a childless woman who suddenly has to take care for her relatives son. I think it was an "okay" movie. She didn't play the main part, though.|
|Moonlight and Valentino||(1995)||as Sylvie Morrow, a frustrated wife who has to learn just to tell her husband what she likes to be happy. She did not play a main part here, either.|
|Corrina, Corrina||(1994)||as Corrina Washington, a housekeeper and kind of baby sitter as well. It is one of her numerous pro-blacks movies. It is nice and gives a little chance to think.|
|The Lion King||(1994)||as the voice of Shenzi, well I don't have to tell you how I liked that movie, do I?|
|Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit||(1993)||as Deloris Van Cartier/Sister Mary Clarence, who is a great star now and has to help the sisters this time again. It's nice, but worse than the first part.|
|Made in America||(1993)||as Sarah Mathews, the "urban bush woman". It's a really brilliant movie!|
|Sarafina!||(1992)||as Mary Masembuko, a teacher in Southafrica. This is one of the most impressing movies I have ever seen! Everybody should watch it!|
|Sister Act||(1992)||as Deloris Van Cartier/Sister Mary Clarence, the casino singer, who is witness of a murder and hides in a convent. This is one of my favourite movies!|
|Ghost||(1990)||as Oda Mae Brown, the medium. "Ghost" is a wonderful romantic, sad, yet exciting movie. I like it a lot.|
|Jumpin' Jack Flash||(1986)||as Teresa "Terry" Dolittle. It's been a while I've seen that one, but a remember it as "okay".|
If you want to see all the movies and other performances
Whoopi Goldberg did, go to the
Internet Movie Data Base
Go to Shenzi
Go to Characters
Home to the Elephant's Graveyard