Suzanne Somers, an iconic and bubbly TV star of the 80s and 90s, has passed away.
The actor, who lit up our screens as Chrissy Snow in Three’s Company and Carol Foster Lambert in Step by Step, was 76 years old.
Her publicist, R. Couri Hay, shared a statement with The Hollywood Reporter confirming the sad news: “She survived an aggressive form of breast cancer for over 23 years. Suzanne was surrounded by her loving husband Alan, her son Bruce, and her immediate family.”
The statement adds that Suzanne’s loved ones had gathered to celebrate her 77th birthday on October 16, however she passed one day before: “Instead, they will celebrate her extraordinary life, and want to thank her millions of fans and followers who loved her dearly.”
Suzanne also starred in She’s the Sheriff, Serial Mom, and went to on to host her own talk show in 2012 (called The Suzanne Show).
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During her time on Three’s Company back in the 80s, it was widely reported that Suzanne asked for a pay rise from $30,000 to $150,000 an episode – which is what her co-star John Ritter and other men in comparable roles were earning. She was offered a $5,000 pay rise and ultimately fired from the show.
“The show’s response was, ‘Who do you think you are?’” Suzanne told People in a 2020 interview. “They said, ‘John Ritter is the star.’”
Her husband, former TV producer Alan Hammel, said he believed the studios wanted to make an example of Suzanne so other women wouldn’t also ask for more money.
“It worked because for years,” he told the publication. “No woman asked to be paid what men were making, until Roseanne [Barr]. But Suzanne was the first feminist to ask to be paid what the men were making.”
Many of Suzanne’s fellow actors have shared words of love for the late star online, including Jane Seymour who writes on Instagram:
“Suzanne’s journey was a testament to courage and grace. Her strength, laughter and kindness touched us all.”
(Feature Image Credit: Ga Fullner/Shutterstock.com)