A Different Actor Almost Portrayed Jack Tripper on ‘Three’s Company’

Company of three is a classic television show that has been introduced generation after generation of television viewers. The series is considered to be largely a starring role for both John Ritter and Suzanne Somers. The classic show, however, almost looked very different. Ritter was not the only celebrity to be considered for the Jack Tripper role.

What was Company of three about?

Company of three the lives of three roommates continued trying to make their way as struggling adults. Jack Tripper, a culinary student, meets Janet Wood and Chrissy Snow by chance. Janet and Chrissie, desperate for a new living room to replace their departing friend, Eleanor, offer Jack the room for free in their two-bedroom apartment.

Jack, Janet and Chrissie at Three's Company
Jack, Janet and Chrissie in the ‘Company of Three’ | Walt Disney Television via Getty Images Walt Disney Photo Archives / Television via Getty Images

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There was one major problem, however. The owner of the building, Mr Roper, would not be allowed to live together. The chamberlains get around the rule by telling Mr. Roper that Jack is gay. Most of the series revolves around Hijinx being a three-roomer and goes awry while trying to hide Jack’s true sexual view from the very strange Mr. Roper.

Company of three regarded as the breaking office of John Ritter

Ritter had a long and stormy career before his sudden death, but for some fans, he will always be like Jack Tripper Company of three. Prior to the series, Ritter had worked relatively steadily as a guest star on a number of shows, but Company of three it was his first major part. He portrayed Jack for the 174 programs in the series.

Iain Ritter as Jack, Joyce DeWitt as Janet, Suzanne Somers as Chrissy
Jack (John Ritter), Janet (Joyce DeWitt) and Chrissie (Suzanne Somers) Walt Disney Television through Getty Images Photo Archives

After his success Company of three, Ritter went on to appear in a number of popular shows. His last appointment came in 2002 in 8 Simple rules. In the series, he painted Paul Hennessy. Ritter fell ill during the preparation for the show and was taken straight to a nearby hospital. Initially diagnosed with a heart attack, it was later revealed that Ritter suffered an aortic dissection. according to Medline Plus, less than half of those who suffer an aortic fracture survive the event. Ritter died in 2003 at the age of 54.

Billy Crystal was considered for the role of Jack Tripper

While fans largely believe Ritter was perfect in his career Company of three, was not the only young actor to be considered for the part. according to Rant Screen, Billy Crystal was also highly regarded for the role. Crystal and Ritter were the same age, and both had mainstream success prior to the series.

Billy Crystal as a guest at the 29th Annual Grammy Awards
Billy Crystal | CBS through Getty Images

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Ritter had a regular place on guests The Waltons before he becomes a star Company of three. Crystal appeared shortly afterwards All In The Family before coming into a role as Jodie Dallas Soap. Ritter and Crystal’s career went out of there. Ritter was successful on TV until his death in 2003. Crystal went on to appear on it Saturday Night Live as well as several different films. His most memorable career came in 1989 when he starred When Harry Met met Sally opposite Meg Ryan.

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