John Ritter’s Widow Arranged Reunion With Suzanne Somers Before His Death


They were vital parts of an equation that created some of the most memorable moments in television history. After a cast shakeup, viewers mourned the sour note things ended on between John Ritter, Suzanne Somers, and Joyce DeWitt. However, thanks to John Ritter’s widow, Amy Yasbeck, he and Somers were able to reconnect before his death.

Ritter starred alongside Somers and DeWitt, playing the hilarious Jack Tripper in Three’s Company. Somers, who played Chrissy Snow, left following a high-profile salary dispute, while Ritter and DeWitt, as Janet Wood, stayed on. For a time, that seemed to be it. But Yasbeck had other plans for the two famous colleagues.


John Ritter’s widow, Amy Yasbeck, shared how she set up a reunion between him and Suzanne Somers

THREE’S COMPANY, 1977-84, Joyce DeWitt, John Ritter, Suzanne Somers, first season / Everett Collection

Yasbeck recently sat down for an interview with the Still Here Hollywood Podcast with Steve Kmetko. During the chat, she recalled setting up a reunion between Ritter and Somers after the air had cleared between the two former co-stars.


RELATED: John Ritter’s Widow Speaks About Her Husband’s Death 20 Years Later

“I didn’t do it in a sneaky way,” she clarified, “We were at the premiere of Victor/Victoria on Broadway [in 1995], and at the intermission, I went to the ladies room and all of a sudden, Suzanne is standing there next to me.” Noticing this, Yasbeck introduced herself and revealed that she was there with Ritter. Somers informed her that she was singing at the afterparty.

“Awesome, I’ll make sure he says hi,” Yasbeck assured her. The heads-up she offered Ritter was, “John, who is the last person you want to see here?”

Rebuilding the bridge

John Ritter’s widow, Amy Yasbeck, arranged for him to meet again with Suzanne Somers / ImageCollect

For the rest of the Broadway performance, Ritter looked shocked. Finally, Somers performed “Can’t Dance, Don’t Ask Me,” and Ritter crossed the distance of the literal and emotional variety.

“And she like, turned around. And they hugged it out and stuff, which was great,” recounted Yasbeck. “You know, it was a big thing.” Yasbeck and Ritter got married in 1999 and she believed that the falling out between him and Somers was due to a misunderstanding, needing to just sit down and be with one another and clear the air.

“I think they were great together and I don’t think they ever maybe got each other, like where each other was coming from after that kind of split,” she mused. “Beause John never felt like it was never about a woman being paid — and John was, like, the most liberal and whatever. It was pretty even [as far as their pay was concerned]. And John, he didn’t ever want to talk about it.” He kept any chats about Somers and her departure private and avoided speaking of it publicly. Yasbeck explained, “He didn’t want to refute anything that Suzanne was saying or get into any kind of a weird thing. “He just loved her — and for a while, from afar. So it was tricky.”

THREE’S COMPANY, John Ritter, 1977-1984. (c)ABC/ Courtesy: Everett Collection

Ritter was 54 when he died suddenly in 2003; his death was attributed to aortic dissection.

In 2012, Somers was also able to reconcile with DeWitt when the latter appeared on Somers’ online show, Breaking Through. At the time of Somers’ departure, DeWitt disapproved of her rocking the boat, while Somers looked at things through a numerical lens.

“I always saw this as a business,” Somers explained. “In a group of serious actors, I probably pissed you all off. And if I did, I’m really sorry. I just really needed money at the time.”

To this, DeWitt admitted, “I didn’t have a business head. So I didn’t understand someone who did.”

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