On Monday’s Vox Tablet, senior editor Ellen Umansky interviews Bruce Jay Friedman (or BJF, as he’s known to friends and family). By all rights, Friedman should be famous. He wrote what some have called the first Freudian novel, Stern, back in 1962, a full seven years before Portnoy’s Complaint hit the scene. He wrote the screenplays to two arguably awesome movies, Splash and Stir Crazy. And he wrote the short story on which the film The Heartbreak Kid was based (twice). And yet he’s not nearly as famous as the famous folks he’s hung out with over the years like Mario Puzo, Warren Beatty, Richard Pryor, Natalie Wood, and so on.
Friedman now has a memoir out, called Lucky Bruce. In it, he does not hesitate to drop names as he regales us with tales about all those literary and Hollywood heavies (and even pokes fun at himself for doing so). When Umansky pointed this out at the start of her interview, he had this to say about it: