Amy Marie Yasbeck (born September 12, 1962) is an American actress. She is best known for her role as Casey Chappel Davenport on the sitcom Wings from 1994 to 1997, and for having played the mermaid Madison in the television film Splash, Too in 1988 (the role originated by Daryl Hannah in the film Splash). She has guest starred in several television shows and appeared in the films House II: The Second Story, Pretty Woman, Problem Child, Problem Child 2, The Mask, Robin Hood: Men in Tights, and Dracula: Dead and Loving It.

Amy Yasbeck
Yasbeck in 2019
Amy Marie Yasbeck

(1962-09-12) September 12, 1962 (age 61)
Years active1985–present
(m. 1999; died 2003)

Early life edit

Yasbeck was born in Blue Ash, Ohio, the daughter of Dorothy Louise Mary (née Murphy), a homemaker, and John Anthony Yasbeck (Arabic: جون أنتوني يَزبك),[1] a butcher and grocery store owner.[2][3][4] Her father was of Lebanese descent, while her mother was of Irish ancestry.[5] As a child, Yasbeck was featured on the package art for the Betty Crocker Easy-Bake Oven. Years later, in 2000, she was presented with a new Easy-Bake Oven on the show I've Got a Secret, for which she was a regular panel member.

She spent her primary and secondary years at two different Catholic schools: Summit Country Day School and Ursuline Academy. She then enrolled in the theater program at the University of Detroit, but didn't graduate.[6] In 1983, after the deaths of both of her parents, her father from a heart attack and her mother from emphysema, Yasbeck moved to New York City.

Career edit

Early into her acting career, she appeared in Rockhopper, an unsold television pilot from 1985. Yasbeck has had guest-starring roles in many television shows, including Dallas, Spies, Werewolf, J.J. Starbuck, Magnum, P.I., China Beach, and Murphy Brown. She auditioned for the role of Elaine Benes on Seinfeld.[7] She played Olivia Reed for four months between 1986 and 1987 on the long-running daytime drama Days of Our Lives. She also played the starring role of the mermaid Madison in the Disney television film Splash, Too in 1988 (the role of Madison was originated by Daryl Hannah in the 1984 film Splash). Yasbeck also had starring roles in the sitcoms Wings, Alright Already, and Life on a Stick and in movies such as House II: The Second Story, Pretty Woman, Problem Child, Problem Child 2, and The Mask. She has twice worked with Mel Brooks: in 1993's Robin Hood: Men in Tights and 1995's Dracula: Dead and Loving It.

Yasbeck also appeared once on the hit DCOS That's So Raven as the mother of the character Chelsea. The episode originally aired on September 22, 2006.

In late 2007, plans surfaced of a potential That's So Raven spin-off featuring Yasbeck and Anneliese van der Pol, who portrayed her daughter, with occasional appearances by Raven-Symoné. The show was scrapped due to van der Pol signing onto a Broadway play, and Yasbeck wanting to take a break from acting to focus on her family.

She was a contestant on the syndicated version of Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? in 2010.

Personal life edit

Yasbeck is the widow of actor John Ritter, with whom she had worked in several projects. She first met him at director Dennis Dugan's house during a read-through of their film Problem Child.

Yasbeck and Ritter also starred together in Problem Child 2 (1991) and guest-starred together in an episode of The Cosby Show that aired in 1991. Ritter also guest-starred on Wings as Yasbeck's estranged husband in the season-seven episode "Love Overboard". The couple had a child together in 1998, and they married the following year on September 18, 1999, at the Murphy Theatre in Wilmington, Ohio.[8]

On September 11, 2003, Ritter fell into a coma when rehearsing for 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter. He was taken to the hospital by paramedics. Initially, Ritter was thought to be suffering a heart attack. At 10:48 that night, Ritter died. The cause of death was later determined to be an aortic dissection stemming from a previously undiagnosed congenital heart defect.[9]

Yasbeck gave her blessing to the continuation of the sitcom, as 8 Simple Rules, where it was ultimately decided that Katey Sagal's character would assume the lead role as a widow.[9]

Yasbeck appeared on Larry King Live on June 16, 2008, to discuss heart disease.[10]

On the September 5, 1990, episode of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, she said that her "great-great-great uncle" Charles Webb Murphy was the owner of the Chicago Cubs during their championships[which?] of the early 1900s.[citation needed]

Wrongful death lawsuit edit

After John Ritter's death, Yasbeck filed a $67 million wrongful death lawsuit against Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center and several doctors who treated him, alleging they misdiagnosed his condition and contributed to his death.[11] Several of the defendants settled out of court for a total of $14 million, including Providence St. Joseph, which settled for $9.4 million. On March 14, 2008, a jury split 9–3 in favor of the doctors, clearing the physicians of any wrongdoing.[12]

Filmography edit

Film edit

Year Title Role Notes
1987 House II: The Second Story Lana
1990 Pretty Woman Elizabeth Stuckey
Problem Child Florence "Flo" Healy
1991 Problem Child 2 Annie Young
1992 The Nutt House Diane Nutt
1993 Robin Hood: Men in Tights Maid Marian
1994 The Mask Peggy Brandt
1995 Home for the Holidays Ginny Johnson Drewer
Dracula: Dead and Loving It Mina Seward
1998 Denial Claudia
The Odd Couple II Stewardess
2012 Little Women, Big Cars Meg
Little Women, Big Cars 2

Television edit

Year Title Role Notes
1985 Rockhopper Sonia Petrova unsold TV pilot
1986–1987 Days of Our Lives Olivia Reed
1987 Dallas Mary Elizabeth 2 episodes
Spies Margo episode: "Right or Wrong"
Werewolf Deidra episode: "Nothing Evil in These Woods"
J.J. Starbuck Doreen episode: "Pilot"
1987–1988 Magnum, P.I. Diana 4 episodes
1988 China Beach Airplane Stewardess episode: "Pilot"
Splash, Too Madison Bauer television film
1989 Trenchcoat in Paradise Nan Thompson television film
Murphy Brown Young Lady in Bar episode: "Why Do Fools Fall in Love?"
Little White Lies Vicki television film
Generations Carla
1990 Midnight Caller Mary Lou Harper episode: "The Hostage Game"
Poochinski Frannie Reynolds unsold TV pilot
1990, 1993 Matlock Model Lauren Chadwick / Cheryl Atkinson 2 episodes
1991 Murder, She Wrote Connie Canzinaro episode: "Family Doctor"
Dillinger Elaine television film
The Cosby Show Alicia Evans episode: "Total Control"
1992 Get a Life Evelyn episode: "Girlfriend 2000"
Designing Women Tiffany episode: "A Little Night Music"
Quantum Leap Frankie Washarskie episode: "Stand Up"
1993 Street Justice Nancy episode: "The Wall"
1994 Diagnosis: Murder Karen Davis episode: "The Restless Remains"
Dave's World Julie episode: "The Funeral"
1994–1997 Wings Casey Chappel Davenport
1995 Platypus Man Wendy episode: "Pilot"
1996 Bloodhounds II Sharon television film
Sweet Dreams Laura Renault television film
1997–1998 Alright Already Renee
1998 Dead Husbands Betty Lancing television film
1999 It's Like, You Know... Karen episode: "The Sweet Smell of Success"
2002 House Blend Sally Harper TV pilot
2003 Just Shoot Me! Skyler episode: "For the Last Time, I Do"
2005 Life on a Stick Michelle Lackerson
2006 That's So Raven Joni Daniels episode: "The Ice Girl Cometh"
2007 Shorty McShorts' Shorts Danielle voice, episode: "Flip-Flopped"
2010 Hot in Cleveland Hailey Nash episode: "The Sex That Got Away"
2013 Bones Diana Malkin Episode: "The Archaeologist in the Cocoon"
Modern Family Lorraine episode: "Larry's Wife"
2015 Workaholics Annette episode: "Gramps Demamp Is Dead"
2016 Pretty Little Liars Claudia episode: "Do Not Disturb"

Books edit

  • Yasbeck, Amy (September 7, 2010). With Love and Laughter, John Ritter. New York: Gallery Books. ISBN 978-1-4165-9841-1.

References edit

  1. ^ Social Security Death Index
  2. ^ Budd, Lawrence (September 23, 1999). "TV Stars Tie The Knot at Local Theater". Dayton Daily News.
  3. ^ Amy Yasbeck Biography (1962?-)
  4. ^ "Descendants of (Hanna Tonnus) John Thomas Yazbeck" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-11-21. Retrieved March 17, 2022.
  5. ^ Lee, Linda (March 9, 2003). "A Night Out With: John Ritter and Amy Yasbeck; Clowning and Autographing". The New York Times. Retrieved April 23, 2010.
  6. ^ Rochester, Mark (1985-07-09). "Blue Ash Actress Gets TV Career Break". Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved 2022-09-24. …she went to the University of Detroit and enrolled in its theater program. She never graduated. Instead she headed northeast to pursue her acting career in New York in 1983.
  7. ^ "Seinfeld: The Actresses Who Almost Played Elaine Benes". ScreenRant. 2022-01-01. Retrieved 2022-04-26.
  8. ^ "John Ritter". Biography. Accessed 13 November 2014.
  9. ^ a b Snauffer, Douglas (2015). The Show Must Go On: How the Deaths of Lead Actors Have Affected Television Series. McFarland. pp. 14–15. ISBN 978-0-7864-5504-1.
  10. ^ "Katie Couric Discuss Personal Loss, Career and Politics; Widow of Actor John Ritter's Speaks Out". CNN. Larry King Live. 22 March 2008. Retrieved 1 September 2019.
  11. ^ Ornstein, Charles (January 24, 2008). "Ritter's family says he didn't have to die". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on 2008-01-27. Retrieved 2008-01-24.
  12. ^ Serjeant, Jill (March 14, 2008). "Doctors cleared in death of John Ritter". Reuters. Archived from the original on 15 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-14.

External links edit