Whoopi Goldberg has been announced to guest star
Nicki Minaj has revealed that her new sitcom will be called Nicki and guest star Whoopi Goldberg.
The US rapper announced the cast via her Instagram last night, which also includes 10-year-old actress Ariana Neal to play Minaj as a child.
Minaj commented on young Neal, calling her tough, sweet and cute. “I literally cried watching her taped audition,” wrote Minaj. “I demanded to meet her! Sat in a room with her teaching her how to rap by doing a beat on the table and forcing her to stay on beat! Lol. Then pulled out all the attitude she had in her lil body. Haha! She’s tough! And so sweet and cute.”
The siitcom Nicki – which has been written by scriptwriter Kate Angelo (Sex Tape, The Back-Up Plan) and produced for ABC Family – details Minaj’s childhood and musical education in Queens, New York City in the 1990s after her family emigrated from Trinidad And Tobago.
The full cast features Neal as a young Minaj, while Minaj’s parents will be played by Selita Ebanks and Wesley Jonathan. Whoopi Goldberg is set to guest star as Minaj’s neighbour, Miss Martha. Minaj herself will narrate the show, in a similar style to Chris Rock in Everybody Hates Chris.
I am honored and excited to announce that I’ve literally hand picked the main characters of my scripted series “Nicki” ~ #ABCFamily #Freeform ~ I’ve been going to the auditions falling in love with some incredible people. Looking forward to unveiling this groundbreaking new show for you guys in 2016!
I literally cried watching her taped audition. I demanded to meet her! Sat in a room with her teaching her how to rap by doing a beat on the table & forcing her to stay on beat! Lol. Then pulled out all the attitude she had in her lil body. Haha! She’s tough! And so sweet & cute. #ArianaNeal #LilNicki Welcome to the family lil lady bug! #ABCFamily #Freeform #Nicki
In other recent news, Minaj’s gig in Angola tonight has caused controversy due to the country’s poor human rights record.
Minaj is set to headline the Christmas festival, Show Unitel Boas Festas, in the Angolan capital of Luanda, but following the original announcement one fan wrote on the rapper’s Facebook page: “Dear Nicki Minaj, could you please postpone your visit to Luanda until democracy is born in Angola?”
Human Rights Foundation head Thor Halvorssen also wrote to Minaj to ask her to cancel her appearance in the country, highlighting the plight of Angolan hip-hop artist Luaty Beirao, who was arrested in June after attending a meeting that discussed democracy in the country.