Whoopi Goldberg Claps Back at ‘Till’ Body Criticism: ‘That Was Not a Fat Suit, That Was Me’

"If you're not sure if that's them in there, don't make blanket statements, because it makes you not sound like you know what you're doing," Goldberg warned critics.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 01:  attends the "Till" premiere during the 60th New York Film Festival at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center on October 01, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for FLC)
Whoopi Goldberg
Getty Images for FLC

Whoopi Goldberg waited until “The View” to respond to a critic’s assumption over her “Till” performance.

Oscar winner Goldberg portrays Alma Carthan, Emmett Till’s grandmother, in Chinonye Chukwu’s biopic “Till,” which premiered at the New York Film Festival prior to debuting in select theaters October 14. A Daily Beast critic noted Goldberg’s “distracting fat suit” in the role; the review has since deleted the criticism following Goldberg’s clarification.

“There was a young lady who writes for one of the magazines, and she was distracted by my fat suit, in her review,” Goldberg said during “The View.” “I don’t really care how you felt about the movie, but you should know that was not a fat suit, that was me…I assume you don’t watch the show, or you would know that was not a fat suit.”

Goldberg added that while it’s “OK to not be a fan of a movie,” critics should “leave people’s looks out” of reviews. “Just comment on the acting, and if you have a question, ask somebody,” Goldberg said. “I’m sure you didn’t mean to be demeaning.”

The Daily Beast issued an editor’s note in the story saying it “has been updated to reflect that Whoopi Goldberg says she was not wearing a fat suit.”

“We will hope that she just didn’t know, and now she’ll know the next time you go to talk about somebody, you talk about them as an actor,” Goldberg said. “If you’re not sure if that’s them in there, don’t make blanket statements, because it makes you not sound like you know what you’re doing.”

IndieWire’s Kate Erbland wrote in her C+ review of the film that “Chukwu’s film occasionally unleashes rage, but much of ‘Till’ feels as if it’s pulled from the innumerable mild-mannered biopics about other historical events that preceded it.”

Erbland wrote, “Written by Chukwu, Michael Reilly, and ‘The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till’ documentarian Keith Beauchamp, ‘Till’ strives to deliver a warm family backstory, a tick-tock of the horrible events that led up to Emmett’s murder, and a rage-inducing courtroom drama all in one. Each element comes up short, though star Danielle Deadwyler (who offers real nuance in her portrayal of Mamie) unquestionably delivers, as does her charming supporting performer, Jalyn Hall as the bright-eyed Emmett.”

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