Whoopi Goldberg (search) as the late Queen of Salsa?
No, gracias, say some longtime fans of Cuban legend Celia Cruz (search).
Academy Award-winner Whoopi, an admirer of the singing sensation and owner of the rights to the Salsa Queen's rags-to-riches life story, is slated to play Cruz in an upcoming feature film.
And that's got some people fuming.
"Whoopi doesn't sing and she's not Latina," said radio host Celines Toribio (search) of the "Coco y Celines" morning program, which airs on Latinomix. "For you to portray a life like Celia Cruz, you have to have that Latina flavor."
Samuel L. Jackson is expected to portray Cruz's husband, Pedro Knight.
Callers to the morning show have chimed in and fans on the street added to the debate - some demanding that only a singer and a Latina should portray the much-loved Queen of Salsa, who was buried last week after a historic two-day wake and funeral attended by more than 140,000 people.
"What about Patti LaBelle?" asked Alex Castro, a Cruz fanatic. "She was Celia's good friend."
Goldberg, who approached Cruz three years ago with the idea of making a biopic, insisted that "Celia's life story must be told."
She claimed that with her and fellow producer Cristina, the popular Univision talk-show host, on board, "You can't miss."
Cuban-born Cristina is slated to produce the project with Goldberg's One Ho Productions.
Goldberg told The Post through a publicist that Cruz had a profound effect on her as a youth: "To see a rich, dark, chocolate woman in command of thousands of people with her voice and her energy helped me believe that anything is possible."