The upcoming Anansi Boys adaptation has recruited another familiar face to play a supporting role. According to Entertainment Weekly, Whoopi Goldberg has joined the series’ cast as the Bird Woman, also known as the God of Birds.
In Gaiman’s book, Goldberg’s character was an antagonist who embodied all birds, whether they were of the regal, majestic persuasion or the birds of prey. She was also wronged by the African trickster God Anansi many years ago. Now, she’s out for revenge.
Goldberg has been landing a lot of genre work in between her hosting duties on The View. She played Mother Abigail in 2020’s The Stand miniseries and recently reprised her role as Guinan on an episode of Star Trek: Picard. Goldberg also happens to be a big fan of Gaiman’s work. She even listed Anansi Boys as one of her summer reads on The View last year. But before that, she moderated a panel for Amazon’s Good Omens series at New York Comic-Con in 2018. And it turns out that Gaiman has long had her in mind for the role of the Bird Woman.
“I wasn’t able to meet her until 2018, when she interviewed me with some of the Good Omens team at New York Comic Con,” said Gaiman in a new statement. “At which point she mentioned that she had just finished listening to Sir Lenny Henry’s reading of Anansi Boys, and that it was one of her favorite books. Sometimes things feel planned and inevitable, and we are incredibly lucky. She’s going to be scary.”
“I have been a fan of this book for a very long time,” added Goldberg. “And when Neil Gaiman told me it was being brought to the screen, I did everything I could to be part of it to help make people aware of Anansi and all his magic.”
Malachi Kirby is headlining Anansi Boys as Charlie Nancy, a mild-mannered Londoner who discovers that his recently-deceased father (Delroy Lindo) was Anansi himself. Additionally, Charlie learns that he has a twin brother, Spider (also played by Kirby). The show will also feature a pantheon of other gods, including Tiger (Hakeem Kae-Kazim); Lion (Emmanuel Ighodaro); Elephant (Cecilia Noble); Snake (Ayanna Witter-Johnson); and Monkey (Don Gilet).
Production on Anansi Boys is currently underway in Scotland. Amazon hasn’t announced a premiere date.
How do you feel about Goldberg joining the series? Let us know in the comments down below!
Recommended Reading: Anansi Boys: A Novel
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