Actress Whoopi Goldberg was baffled by her recent Disney Legend honour, because she had lost track of how many jobs she had completed for the Hollywood studio.
The Sister Act star was saluted alongside the late Carrie Fisher, Oprah Winfrey, and Marvel comics icon Stan Lee at the 2017 D23 Expo in California on Friday (14Jul17), but she admits she was initially confused as to why she was being invited to receive the top accolade.
"It was actually very nice and a bit of a surprise because I didn't realise how much work I had actually done for Disney," she shared on her U.S. talk show The View on Monday (17Jul17).
"They were showing this (footage of her work) and I was like, 'Oh yeah!', 'cause I couldn't figure out why, you know, with all the people that have worked for Disney, why they were giving me this thing (award)," she continued. "And then I saw all this stuff (old clips), and was like, 'OK, I'll take it, thanks!' It was great... It was really lovely; I'm thrilled."
Whoopi was a surprise guest at the D23 Expo, and used the opportunity to show off a pair of Minnie Mouse shoes as she stepped up to the podium, revealing she was born in the same year the Disneyland theme park opened near her home during her acceptance speech.
She said, "My mother always said, 'One day I’m going to take you kids (to Disneyland). Instead, I got to take her. Disney made you feel that no matter where you came from, you were welcome."
The actress, 61, voiced the hyena Shenzi in Disney's animated classic The Lion King in 1994 and its 2004 direct-to-video sequel, The Lion King 1½. She also worked on Toy Story 3 and has made various appearances in The Muppets franchise, which is owned by Disney.