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The series' name and premise were derived from the book 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter: And Other Tips from a Beleaguered Father (Not That Any of Them Work) by W. While 8 Simple Rules was renewed for a second season and production had begun, Ritter's sudden death in September 2003 left the series in an uncertain position.
After a hiatus, the series returned and continued without Ritter, with the producers deciding to kill off Paul and not replace him.
8 Simple Rules (originally 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter for the first season) is an American sitcom, originally starring John Ritter and Katey Sagal as middle-class parents Paul and Cate Hennessy raising a family of three.
Kaley Cuoco, Amy Davidson and Martin Spanjers co-starred as their teenage kids; Bridget, Kerry and Rory Hennessy.
Crew members took him to a nearby hospital, Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center, where he was misdiagnosed as having a heart attack and as a result, his condition had worsened when physicians later diagnosed him with an aortic dissection, and he died that evening at the age of 54.
James Garner and David Spade later joined the main cast as Cate's father and nephew, Jim Egan and C. Barnes, in an attempt to fill the void left by Ritter.
After three seasons, ABC cancelled 8 Simple Rules in May 2005 due to low ratings.
The third season finale was not aired for May sweeps.
The finale received a 3.9/8 rating share which gave ABC a third-place finish behind NBC's Dateline (5.8/11) and CBS's Joan of Arcadia (4.9/10), which starred Ritter's son, Jason.