By New York Natives Staff

 

Whoopi Goldberg (Caryn Elaine Johnson)

Born: November 13, 1955, New York, New York

Occupation: Actress, Comedian

Marital Status: Alvin Martin (Divorced ), David Claessen (Divorced), Lyle Trachtenberg (Divorced)

Children: Alexandrea Martin

Education: New York University

 

“I am the American Dream. I am the epitome of what the American Dream basically said. It said you could come from anywhere and be anything you want in this country. That’s exactly what I’ve done.”

-Whoopi Goldberg

 

Whoopi Goldberg really is the epitome of the American Dream. She started with nothing, and rose to become one of the most popular and talented actresses in the business. She climbed and clawed her way from obscurity to the worldwide celebrity she is now. She embodies every notion of hard work paying off.

A few years after Goldberg dropped out of high school due to her undiagnosed dyslexia, she moved to California to pursue a career in show business. She won Bay Area Theatre Award for her portrayal of comedienne Moms Mabley in a one-woman show.

In 1983, Goldberg starred in the immensely popular The Spook Show. It was a one-woman production that addressed the issue of race in America. She created “Little Girl,” an African-American child obsessed with having blond hair; and “Fontaine,” a junkie who also happens to hold a doctorate in literature for the production. After the show was moved to Broadway, Goldberg won a Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album for the recording of skits taken from the show.

The success of the show lead to increased to attention from Hollywood heavyweights like Steven Spielberg. He cast Goldberg in the 1985 film The Color Purple. The film went on to receive ten Academy Award and five Golden Globe nominations. Goldberg won her first Golden Globe for the role.

The Color Purple

Goldberg followed up her Golden Globe winning role with a slew of hits. She starred in Jumpin’ Jack Flash, Fatal Beauty, Clara’s Heart, Homer & Eddie, and The Long Walk Home. Her next award-winning role would come in the film, Ghost. She won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for her role as Oda.

Ghost

Goldberg would appear in the surprise hit, Sister Act, in 1992. Goldberg would win the American Comedy Award for Funniest Actress in a Motion Picture for her role in the film. The success of the film would even lead to a sequel, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit.

She became the first woman without a male co-host to host the Oscars ever in 1994. She would host the Oscars three more times: 1996, 1999, and 2002. She branched to television, appearing in such productions as Hollywood Squares and Star Trek: The Next Generation.

In more recent news, Goldberg became one of the hosts of the daytime television program, The View. She replaced Rosie O’Donnell in 2007. Goldberg has proven she is a modern day “renaissance woman” with all her accomplishments.

Featured Image Courtesy of Guy Magazine

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