Next week, Whoopi Goldberg kicks off her film directing debut, while developing a potential new series for Nickelodeon’s NickMom programming block.
Amid other ongoing projects, including her hosting duties on ABC daytimer “The View” and as a producer of the national tour of “Sister Act,” Goldberg is aiming to wrap by fall a doc on Moms Mabley, the pioneering African-American standup who died in 1975.
She is directing the docu “I Got Somethin’ To Tell You,” with an eye toward a cable and/or arthouse release and has already lined up stars to be interviewed, beginning next week in Los Angeles.
“It’s really about her impact on comedy, on comics, on women and the idea that she was able to maintain a standup career pretty much from 1930 to 1975, which is pretty extraordinary,” Goldberg told Variety. “So I want to revisit some of those periods of time and talk to people who were there and people who were impacted like myself.”
Goldberg began performing a solo stage show based on Mabley in the 1980s, something she says she will probably revive in some form after completion of the documentary, which will be approximately 90 minutes.
“She could say stuff that nobody else could say,” Goldberg said. “She talked about homosexuality, she talked about ageism, she talked about racism. She could be really risque, and she did all these great double-entendre jokes and talked about all this stuff without using one bad word.”
The docu is produced by Goldberg, Tom Leonardis and George Schlatter.
For NickMom, Goldberg is working on a proposed 22-minute weeknight show — a mix of talk, makeover and humor — that she would produce with Leonardis. She also is on the producing team for “Sister Act,” the musical based upon the 1992 feature film in which she starred. That will begin a national tour in September, with Raven-Symone starring.
As for Goldberg’s longstanding gig on “The View,” she said it is “steady as she goes.” She said she appreciates the show’s flexibility in allowing her to purse other projects simultaneously, including the passion project that is “I Got Sometin’.”