New York – Whoopi Goldberg
We all know Whoopi Goldberg best from her movie appearances. Most of us have seen plenty of her films, from Ghost to Sister Act. You don’t see Whoopi Goldberg acting too much these days, though. Nowadays she’s a regular on the daytime show The View, often making headlines with her political commentary.
But for everything else Goldberg is known for, big fans of Star Trek: The Next Generation will always remember her best as Guinan. Apparently, her role on the series was something she was campaigning for herself. She is said to have become a lifelong Trekkie when seeing Uhura on the show as a child. It was inspiring to her as an African American woman to follow her dreams in entertainment.
In fact, the role of Guinan was written specifically for Goldberg. Eager to be on the show, Goldberg suggested she be the new ship’s doctor following Gates McFadden’s brief exit from the series. Producers had other plans for the doctor and weren’t sure they could come up with a big enough character for Goldberg. But Goldberg insisted, saying she’d be happy if she were just sweeping the floor in the background. That’s when they wrote her in as a bartender on the ship.