Allan Arbus, the photographer turned actor best known for playing acerbic psychiatrist Sidney Freedman on M*A*S*H, died Friday at his home in Los Angeles. He was 95.
His daughter, Amy Arbus, told The Los Angeles Times the cause of death was complications of congestive heart failure.
Arbus only appeared on the long-running CBS series in a dozen episodes but made quite a memorable mark, as his alter ego was known for hurling trademark zingers while tending to the psychic wounds at the fictional 4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital.
In fact, the thesp did such a good job as Freedman that costar Alan Alda, who played Capt. "Hawkeye" Pierce," often hit him up for some therapeutic advice between takes.
"He was so authentic in the role it was hard to believe that he wasn't that person," Alda told the Times. "He brought a depth…to what he faced as a psychiatrist on the show. It helped the audience and…actors believe some of the stresses our characters were under."
Born in New York City on Feb. 15, 1918, Arbus developed an early interest in photography, and in 1941 he married Diane Arbus, who went on to become a famous photographer in her own right.
After Allan returned from serving in World War II, the two opened up their own fashion-photography studio, landing contracts for magazines like Glamour and Vogue. They separated in 1959 and divorced in 1969, and Diane committed suicide two years later.
After their divorce, Arbus made the switch to acting, appearing in several films in the '70s including the cult classic Greaser's Palace, Scream, Pretty Peggy opposite Bette Davis, and Damien: Omen II.
His best work was in TV, with recurring roles and guest shots on dozens of shows including Starsky & Hutch, Taxi, Matlock, L.A. Law and, most recently, Curb Your Enthusiasm in 2000.
Arbus is survived by his second wife, actress Mariclare Costello, their daughter Arin, and Amy and Doon, his two daughters from his first marriage.