Rare Book & Manuscript Library
 

William Friedberg papers, 1950-1965

Summary Information

Abstract

William "Billy" Friedberg (1916-1965) is best remembered as a television comedy writer, although he also wrote plays, musicals, variety reviews, short stories, and radio programs. Among his best-known works are episodes of "Car 54, Where Are You?", "As Time Goes By", and "The Phil Silvers Show". Friedberg's work represented in this collection spans many genres, including comedy review sketches, TV dramas, short stories, plays, and musicals.

At a Glance

Call No.: MS#1455
Bib ID 6796315 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Friedberg, William, 1916-1965
Title William Friedberg papers, 1950-1965
Physical Description 5.72 linear feet (5.72 linear feet 11 document boxes)
Language(s) English .
Access

This collection has no restrictions.

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This collection is arranged in two series. Series I: Writings and Work, 1950-1965, undated; Series II: Personal, 1950-1965.

Description

Summary

Friedberg's work represented in this collection spans many genres, including comedy review sketches, TV dramas, short stories, plays, and musicals. The vast majority of the collection consists of typed scripts, either drafts or "shooting scripts" used for production, which Friedberg wrote or produced. Production files for some of the scripts are the second-largest group of material, including casting ideas, budgets, contracts, advertising records, and intra-staff memos. The collection also contains documents which Friedberg used in his creative process, including typed or handwritten notes and ideas for future works, and newspaper clippings that he used for inspiration. Three sketchbooks of pencil drawings are also present, which may be the work of Friedberg's wife Hope Cameron. Finally, there are a small number of family snapshots and personal papers.

  • Series I: Writings and Work of Billy Friedberg, 1950-1965, undated

    This series consists of Friedberg's writings, organized by genre, and documents that supported the creative process and production of his dramatic work (drafts, notes, contracts, budgets, etc.). Also included are production documents of the television programs that he produced. Material in this series is arranged alphabetically. When multiple episodes of a program are included, they are arranged in chronological order.

  • Series II: Personal, circa

    This series holds a folder of letters from Neil Simon, written circa 1964 when Simon was in London; most of the contents are personal, chronicling Simon's experience living in England, but he also occasionally touches on various professional projects, both his own and Friedberg's. This series contains a "General" folder of personal papers such as letters, contracts, clippings about Friedberg, and a resume. Series II also includes two unidentified photos, probably of Friedberg, and a caricature of him by an unknown artist. Lastly, it houses three sketchbooks of pencil drawings, artist unknown, although two are marked "Hope" on the cover, suggesting that they may have belonged to Friedberg's wife, Hope Cameron. Items are arranged alphabetically by material type, after the General folder.

General Note

Other finding aids: "American Film Scripts Online (AFSO)"; "Neil Simon: Plays" Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library, Harvard University; "The Richard Hoffman Neil Simon Collection" University of Delaware

Using the Collection

Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Restrictions on Access

This collection has no restrictions.

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. Permission to publish material from the collection must be requested from the Curator of Manuscripts, Rare Book and Manuscript Library (RBML). The RBML approves permission to publish that which it physically owns; the responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); William Friedberg papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Anne Holt, GSAS 2013.

Finding aid written by Anne Holt in June 2008.

Revision Description

2008-11-07 File created.

2009-05-22 xml document instance created by Patrick Lawlor

2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.

Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.

Subject

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Dramatists, American -- 20th century Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Friedberg, William, 1916-1965 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Hiken, Nat Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
King, Alan, 1927-2004 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Liebman, Max Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Radio programs -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Radio serials Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Raye, Martha Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Screenwriters -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Simon, Neil Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Television -- Production and direction Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Television authorship Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Television scripts Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Theater -- United States -- History -- 20th century Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical / Historical

William "Billy" Friedberg (1916-1965) was a New York theatre publicity agent who began writing and then producing television during the 1950s and early 1960s. He is best remembered as a television comedy writer, although he also wrote plays, musicals, variety reviews, short stories, and radio programs. Among his best-known works are episodes of "Car 54, Where Are You?""As Time Goes By", and "The Phil Silvers Show". In 1957 and 1958, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences awarded Friedberg the Emmy for Best Comedy Writing of a Variety or Situation Comedy, for "The Phil Silvers Show"; he was nominated for the same award again in 1959. He collaborated on a few television scripts with writer Neil Simon, worked on various television programs with producers Nat Hiken and Max Liebman, and wrote routines for comedians such as Alan King and Martha Raye. His television work began in the period of review and variety programs sponsored by large corporations, and evolved into the era of the long-running serial drama or sitcom. Later in his career he served as a producer for a few television series, including "Harry's Girls". He was married briefly in 1945 to actress Jane Hoffman, and then from 1950-1965 to actress Hope Cameron. Friedberg died of a heart attack at the age of 49.