Whoopi Goldberg Accepts Patrick Stewart's Offer to Reprise Her Star Trek Role in Picard
Whoopi Goldberg was brought to tears on Wednesday’s episode of The View, and it’s all Sir Patrick Stewart’s fault.
During an appearance to the long-running ABC talk show, Stewart extended a special invitation Goldberg’s way: the chance to reprise her role as Guinan in season 2 of his new CBS All Access series, Star Trek: Picard.
His invite — which Goldberg immediately accepted with a hug and cheers of “Yes, yes, yes” — came on behalf of Star Trek: Picard‘s executive producer Alex Kurtzman and “all of his colleagues.”
“[We] want to invite you into the second season,” said Stewart, 79.
The request inspired standing ovations from the audience of The View,and cheers from Goldberg’s co-hosts Joy Behar, Meghan McCain and Sunny Hostin — all of whom said that Goldberg has often spoken about her time on Star Trek fondly.
“This was one of the greatest experiences,” Goldberg, 64, gushed on Wednesday. “I’ve said this before, but Star Trek was one of the great experiences from the beginning to the end. It just. .. you know, I had the best, best, best time. Best time ever.”
“I’m so glad to hear that,” Stewart said. “Well, it was wonderful having you, and we can’t wait to have you with us one more time.”
Goldberg made her first appearance as Guinan in Star Trek: The Next Generation back in 1988.
A lifelong Star Trek and science fiction fan, the Oscar winner previously said she did the show to inspire viewers, just as she was inspired as a little girl watching Nichelle Nichols as Lt. Uhura on the original Star Trek TV series from 1966 to 1969.
Nichols made history as the first black person ever to appear on a sci-fi television program.
“When I was a little girl, it was like, ‘Oh, we are in the future,‘ ” Goldberg recalled on the special features to the Star Trek: The Next Generation Season 6 Blu-ray set, Yahoo reported. She then called series creator Gene Roddenberry and told him, “I really want to be on this show.”
Roddenberry then created the part of Guinan for Goldberg. It was the last recurring Star Trek character he created before his death in 1991, Goldberg and Stewart said on Wednesday’s The View.
A bartender on the spaceship Enterprise, the character is El-Aurian, a race of listeners with gifts for mystical observation. Guinan first showed up in The Next Generation‘s second season and appeared in 29 episodes through season 6. Goldberg also made cameos as Guinan in the films Star Trek Generations (1994) and Star Trek Nemesis (2002).
Star Trek: Picard sees Stewart step back in the role of Jean-Luc Picard, the unflappable former USS Enterprise captain.
The show takes place 18 years after the events of Star Trek: Nemesis, Stewart’s last time playing Picard. Previous star Trek stars Data (Brent Spiner), Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes), Deanna Troi (Marina Sirtis), and Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan) all return as well.
Trekkies can expect a much darker series this time around. “I wanted to show that Picard’s world had changed, because Patrick’s world has certainly changed,” Stewart said on The View. “We are no longer now living in the same society we were living in 18 years ago.”
Does that mean Goldberg’s character would have to be aged 18 years? Not necessarily, Stewart said.
“She’s doesn’t have to,” he explained on The View. “Who knows what Guinan’s history really is. That can be one of the excitements down the road. We haven’t talked about half the things we could do.”
Star Trek: Picard debuts on CBS All Access on Thursday.