Since the early ‘80s, Whoopi Goldberg has seemingly done it all. The award-winning comedian, actress and television host was born November 13, 1955 in New York City.
Born Caryn Elaine Johnson, Goldberg worked a series of odd jobs and bounced around the country before finding her creative footing in New York. She took on the name “Whoopi” after the whoopie cushion gag toy and her issues with flatulence before taking the stage.
Goldberg’s one-woman show “Whoopi Goldberg,” made its Broadway debut in 1984. It was turned into an HBO special and renamed “Whoopi Goldberg: Direct From Broadway” in 1985. Goldberg also won a Grammy Award for the show’s recording.
Director Steven Spielberg observed Goldberg’s ability to play a range of characters and cast her in his 1985 film “The Color Purple,” earning Goldberg and its star-studded cast both controversy and rave reviews. This kicked off an especially robust period of acting, which led to her Oscar Award win in 1990 for Best Supporting Actress in the movie “Ghost.” She also won a Golden Globe Award for the role in the same category.
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Goldberg continued to act, appearing or starring in 150 movies and hosted the Academy Awards several times in between becoming a TV, film and theater producer. In 2002, she won a Tony Award for producing the Broadway show “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and in that same year won an Emmy Award for her role in the documentary, “Beyond Tara: The Extraordinary Life of Hattie McDaniel.”
In 2007, Goldberg stepped away from acting and began hosting and moderating the daytime talk show “The View,” a role she commands to this day. She is one of the few entertainers to have won the coveted EGOT – Emmy, Grammy, Tony, Oscar grouping of awards.
Goldberg is 64 today.
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