Talk about a lucky man. I mean, for an actor to be in a hit show like
Three's Company in the 70�s � do a few other shows that flopped, and end up in another hit show,
8 Simple Rules� yeah. He was a lucky one. Of course, he was in
The Waltons, and a favorite movie of mine which I would love to see again,
Americathon. OH! And IT! The Stephen King miniseries which I loved. Beep Beep Richey!
See his complete credits here.
Monday, October 6, Findadeath.com friend Tom sent in a correction. The house pictured above is Ritter's OLD house, this is the new one, just a stone's throw from Lillibet Montgomery's house, in Benedict Canyon. So, John really left from THIS house, probably from this driveway, and passing by this mailbox. Thanks Tom!
He went to work, and they were on the soundstage with Henry Winkler, who was appearing on the show. Around 4:30, John seemed uneasy and went to his dressing room. Katey Sagal thought it was food poisoning. He was sweating and vomiting. Ritter was probably taken out this door, off the lot, to St. Josephs hospital emergency, just across the road. Did you know that Disney has their own ambulance and fire department? I suppose most studios probably do. As he was leaving, he gave his colleagues the thumbs up. He seemed to be in good spirits, considering he was sweating and vomiting. He went into surgery later that evening, and died on the operating room table, just after 10pm. He was only 54 years old, due to be 55 in six days. Weird thing, his wife�s birthday is September 12, and their wedding anniversary is the 18th. Bad month for the Ritter household.
Dear Fellow Cast Member:
He had a private funeral on Monday the 15th, at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills (and I am sure they were salivating at the thought of having yet another immortal in their soil), and a memorial service for the public is being planned. My buddy Harry found
his grave, and sent me this picture. Thanks Harry.
2004: Findadeath.com friend Mama Bear sends us this: I know you don't feel the same way that I do about John Ritter : ), but I stopped by
his grave and paid my respects this weekend of
his one year anniversary. Someone had left an "8 Simple Rules, Season One", hat for him and there were also
flowers and notes. I took a few pictures incase you wanted to post them.
Trivia from Findadeath.com friend Andrew Glover: John starred with another findadeath celeb, Dorothy Stratten, in her last picture, "They All Laughed." John and Dorothy wind up together at the end of the picture. She was murdered before the picture was released; at least he lasted longer. Thanks Andrew!
More from Findadeath.com friend Dave St. Jean: I can't believe you didn't mention John's critically acclaimed serious role as the gay guy in "Sling Blade". It completely reversed my opinion of him (that mirrored yours in the opening of your story). Almost every review singles it out as an awesome performance. I now believe Ritter was a versatile talent (much like Jim Carrey) that got pigeonholed into a single genre of role because of Jack Tripper. At least Jack Tripper didn't do to John what Batman did to Adam West.
Okay, a juvenile bit of fun, sent in by Findadeath.com friend Tracey: I sent you the from where you mighta... maybe.. kinda... been able to see John Ritter's balls hanging out of his boxers on Three's Company. (I think I can see them, but maybe it's just wishful thinking!:))
Anyway, that is not why I am writing you. I
was wondering if you had heard anything about them possibly trying to cast Ed
O'Neill for guest shots on 8 Simple Rules. I think he is supposed to be
playing Ritter's brother or something. He comes around to help
Thanks Tracey. Fun pics, and good gossip. Too good to be true, probably, but fun!
Findadeath.com friend Scott Schroeder sends us this link, in reference to the Ritter nut incident.The most famous quip about this issue was uttered by John Ritter, who told the New York Observer when they asked him about the controversy: "I've requested that [Nickelodeon] air both versions, edited and unedited, because sometimes you feel like a nut, and sometimes you don't."
This just in December 2003, from Findadeath friend John:
December 2003, from Findadeath friend Heather: I just checked out your John Ritter update (the Nick at Nite pix ;-)), and I just
wanted to confirm that those are in fact what you say they are. About a year ago, when Three's Company started airing on Nick at Nite, I saw John on
Jay Leno or Conan (one of those late night shows). He said that he was wearing short shorts in an episode, and 'his boys' were hanging out there. At the time, the censors didn't catch it, but Nick at Nite did after airing it
the first time, and removed it. I just thought you might like that.
Thanks for setting us straight on that, Sam!
UPDATE, September 10, 2004, Ritter's Family Sues Doctors:
John Ritter's family is mourning the first anniversary of the actor's death - and taking the medics they claim could have kept him alive to court. Ritter's wife, actress Amy Yasbeck, and the couple's kids have filed suit against doctors at St Joseph's Medical Center in Burbank, California, claiming they misdiagnosed the aortic aneurysm that cost Ritter his life on September 11. Ritter complained of chest pains, tightness and vomiting before he collapsed on the set of the sitcom 8 Simple Rules a year ago. The family suit claims, "If the proper procedures had been followed to diagnose and treat Mr. Ritter's symptoms, he would be alive and well today."
UPDATE, December 2004, from Findadeath friend Wayne:
Here is a photo, apparently of the last shoot...I got it from a Houston TV station's ABC 13 web site. It appears the cast was doing some promo thingy.
April 2009 from Mark Langlois:
John Ritter was on ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live! back in April 2003 (five months before his death), and Jimmy jokingly promised John that he would not rest until John's photo was added to the Hollywood High School mural of celebrity alumni - from which Ritter had been left out. On June 6, 2008, a 50 foot tall John Ritter was added to the mural (along the side) after campaigning by Kimmel - and corporate sponsors were gathered to fund the $74K painting and a $500K endowment to the school's performing arts program. Ritter's widow, Amy Yasbeck-Ritter & daughter Stella, plus Jimmy Kimmel & mural artist Eloy Torrez attended the ceremony.