Whoopi Goldberg has won numerous awards and received considerable acclaim for her work in film, television, recordings and theater. 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, Goldberg worked in theater and improvisation in San Diego and the Bay Area, where she performed with the Blake Street Hawkeyes theater troupe. It was there that she created the characters that became The Spook Show, which evolved into the hit Broadway show, Grammy Award-winning album and HBO special Whoopi Goldberg, Direct from Broadway, that helped launch her career. She returned to Broadway in 1997, where she received rave reviews for her performance in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.
Goldberg 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 both the Academy Award and Golden Globe Award as Best Supporting Actress. Her other films include Jumpin' Jack Flash; Clara's Heart; The Long Walk Home; Soapdish; The Player; Sarafina!; Sister Act; Sister Act II; Made in America; Corrina, Corrina; The Lion King; Star Trek: Generations; Boys on the Side; Eddie; Bogus; The Associate; Ghosts of Mississippi; How Stella Got Her Groove Back; Deep End of the Ocean ;and Girl, Interrupted. Her latest feature films are the recently released Kingdom Come and Rat Race.
On television, Goldberg has appeared in many series and specials, including her own HBO specials, three times as host of ABC's A Gala for the President at Ford's Theatre, and eight Comic Relief telecasts with Billy Crystal and Robin Williams. She received Emmy Award nominations as host of the 1994, 1996, and 1999 Academy Awards telecasts. Goldberg appeared for five seasons on Star Trek: The Next Generation, 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. For the series The Wonderful World of Disney, Goldberg appeared in both Rogers & Hammerstein's Cinderella and A Knight in Camelot as well as in two mini-series, Alice in Wonderland and The Magical Legend of the Leprechauns.
Goldberg has also made her mark as a producer. She is executive producer of and appears in the center square on King World's popular, Emmy Award-winning Hollywood Squares, which airs five nights a week in its current, first-run syndication. Goldberg also executive produces Lifetime's Strong Medicine, which currently is the top-rated drama series on cable television. In addition to the recent Lifetime Original Movie What Makes a Family, Goldberg was also executive producer of the Showtime television movie Ruby's Bucket of Blood, starring Angela Bassett. Other producing projects include the now-in-production feature films The Piano Man's Daughter and The Mao Game; the forthcoming Broadway musical Thoroughly Modern Millie; and the TNT Original Movie Call Me Clause, in which she also stars.
March 2000 marked the launch of Whoopi.com with an animated "cast" featured on an entertaining, colorful site that offers a wide variety of online and live features, including her Second Annual Academy Awards live Webcast. Goldberg made her first successful foray into the Internet in 1999, when she partnered with Flooz.com, an innovative online gift site. She is also involved with Imammogram.com.
In addition to her Oscar, Grammy and two Golden Globe awards, Goldberg 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.
In 1992 Whoopi Goldberg 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 United States and around the world.