Joseph Behar, a director of both Days of our Lives and General Hospital, has passed away. He died June 26 at his home in Manhattan Beach and was 94 years old.
In Memoriam — Joseph Behar
His passing was reported in The Hollywood Reporter. Behar had spent over two decades directing at DAYS. In fact, he directed the first episode, which aired on November 8, 1965. Behar also directed GH’s premiere episode in 1963. He came out of retirement to return to the ABC soap and remained there as a director for a decade.
Behar also directed the Monty Hall version of Let’s Make A Deal, including that show’s pilot. He won five Daytime Emmys, four of which were for GH. He retired again in 2005 at the age of 79.
In 1962, Behar won the DGA (Directors Guild of America) award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Television for The Ernie Kovacs Show.
Behar was born in Harlem on September 30, 1926. His education at Hofstra University in 1945 was cut short when he was drafted into the U.S. Army. He started a newspaper for his fellow soldiers while he was stationed in Japan.
After being discharged, Behar landed a gig at WPTZ-TV in Philadelphia as a cameraman after he studied TV production. He was later promoted to being a director. Behar went on to direct such series as Atom Squad, The Greatest Gift, and a weekday morning program starring Ernie Kovacs.
In the late 1950s, Behar moved to Los Angeles where he and Kovacs worked together on several network shows. He also directed episodes of the series Chain Letter, Here’s Edie, Take a Good Look, and From These Roots.
Behar is survived by his wife Carolyn of 53 years, sons Jeffrey, Steven, and Greg, and their respective partners Lori, Tim, and Jennifer. He is also survived by grandchildren Alex, Mallory, Niko, and Lydia, and great-granddaughter Brooklyn. Soap Hub sends condolences to Joseph Behar’s family and loved ones at this difficult time.