A veteran black American stage actor who also worked in film and TV, Frederick O'Neal had his greatest impact on the industry as a union leader: he was president emeritus of Actors' Equity Association and Associated Actors and Artistes of America. O'Neal was also a major figure in the black theater in New York City and London, where he founded and organized several theater companies and cultural organizations. The American Negro Theater, which O'Neal co-founded, gave a start to the careers of Harry Belafonte and Sidney Poitier. O'Neal's feature credits include Elia Kazan's "Pinky" (1949), Richard Brooks' "Something of Value" (1958), "Anna Lucasta" (1958), and Ossie Davis' "Cotton Comes to Harlem" (1970). O'Neal was also a regular on the 1960s cop sitcom, "Car 54, Where Are You?".