Arthur Friedman, professor emeritus in the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television who chronicled the lives of more than 100 entertainment industry pioneers on the “Turning Point” radio program of the 1950s and ’60s, died Jan. 23 of a heart attack near Los Angeles. He was 81.
As a professional actor, he was also known as Arthur Bernard.
Friedman, who began teaching at UCLA in 1948, conducted courses in acting and directing for film and television. He helped establish the TV curriculum in 1951 and taught classes in broadcasting, sportscasting and production techniques.
Friedman produced the radio series “Turning Point,” which featured interviews of more than 100 pioneers of the world of entertainment including popular music hall personalities of England as well as early film stars such as Lillian Gish, Harold Lloyd and Mary Pickford.
The collection, recorded between 1950 and 1965, was acquired by UCLA Charles E. Young Research Library’s Department of Special Collections, is cataloged at the Library of Congress and is planned to be presented online eventually.
During the 1950s, Friedman also created and produced a historical radio series about inmate management from incarceration through probation at several prisons throughout California. The series was distributed worldwide by the United Nations.
As an actor, Friedman appeared (under his stage name Arthur Bernard) on numerous TV shows including “Lancer,” “Mannix” and “Star Trek” and in the miniseries “Rich Man, Poor Man” and “War and Remembrance.”
Friedman appeared in numerous legit productions as well, including “Winterset,” “Death of a Salesman,” “The Caretaker,” “The Homecoming” and “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf.”
He recently completed shooting an appearance in the upcoming feature “Animal,” starring Rob Schneider.
The 50-year resident of Encino, Calif., Friedman was a member of the Screen Actors Guild, Actors’ Equity and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.
He retired from UCLA in 1990 but remained active with the campus community, acting in student films, participating in alumni programs and attending productions.
He is survived by his wife, Madgel, three sons, a daughter and a granddaughter.