Take them to church! Sister Act pulled back the curtain on what it’s like to be a nun — and gave life to a musical film with impact that’s lasted 30-plus years.
Whoopi Goldberg made nun life seem cool when she starred as Deloris Van Cartier, a lounge singer who joins a convent after being placed in witness protection in the 1992 film.
After taking on the persona of Sister Mary Clarence — in order to stay safe until she testifies against her ex-boyfriend Vince (Harvey Keitel), who she saw kill someone in Reno, Nevada — she creates life-long friendships with Sister Mary Patrick (Kathy Najimy), Sister Mary Lazarus (Mary Wickes) and Sister Mary Robert (Wendy Makkena).
While Sister Mary Clarence gets off to a rocky start with Mother Superior (Maggie Smith), the duo ultimately come together when the showgirl creates buzz around the church’s choir and sparks joy in the community.
The success of the first film led to the 1993 sequel, Sister Act: Back in the Habit, which saw the return of all four nuns — Sister Mary Clarence included. In the movie, Deloris presses pause on her Las Vegas show to go back undercover as a nun to help her friends save St. Francis High School from closing.
The sequel brought in new faces with high schoolers Rita (Lauryn Hill), Maria (Alanna Ubach) and Margaret (Jennifer Love Hewitt). The two box-office successes then led to a Broadway musical, which ran regionally in 2006 before opening on the West End in 2009.
Nearly three decades after Sister Act caught fans’ attention, Goldberg announced that a third film is in the works.
“For a long time, they kept saying no one wanted to see it,” the View cohost said on an October 2020 episode of The Late Late Show With James Corden. “And then quite recently, it turns out, that may not be true. People may want to see it. So, we’re working diligently to try to figure out how to get the gang together and come back.”
The Ghost actress revealed that she’s always loved being a part of the Sister Act family, saying, “It’s fun and it feels good. And you know, nobody’s mad. It’s just, listen — bad singing, great singing, OK singing and then nuns. What’s better than that?”
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Scroll down to see what the Sister Act cast has been up to since the film’s release: