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Kaley Cuoco Received The Best Career Advice From John Ritter On 8 Simple Rules

Best known for her role as Penny on "The Big Bang Theory," Kaley Cuoco's most recent appearances include roles in movies like "Meet Cute" and "The Man from Toronto," as well as her portrayal of Cassie Bowden in HBO Max's "The Flight Attendant," for which she was praised by the fans and critics alike. But Cuoco's acting career began much before "The Big Bang Theory." Her breakthrough part was that of Bridget Hennessy on ABC's "8 Simple Rules," in which she starred alongside John Ritter, whose words of advice remain with Cuoco even today.

When she started on "8 Simple Rules," Cuoco was just 15 years old, and although she had a handful of experiences working on set before, she was still very much a newcomer to the acting world. While filming the sitcom, Ritter advised young Cuoco to be mindful of how she approaches her coworkers, telling her that a lead actor's behavior on set has a profound impact on the entire crew.

Cuoco follows Ritter's advice to this day

In a June 2021 interview with Variety, Kaley Cuoco reminisced on working with John Ritter and the advice he passed to her. She said: "I remember conversations when I was 15 years old where he said, 'You have to remember when you're on a set, it's like a tree. Number one's here, and any way you act is all trickling down that tree.' You can be a boss, you can be a great actor, you can get work done, but you can just be nice."

In another Variety interview published in February 2021, she also brought up Ritter's influence: "The respect and the kindness and the joy he brought to that set, it was unbelievable. In the future, if I was that No. 1, I knew how I was going to run my set."

According to her co-stars, she really does try to be a kind, empathic leader on set. Rosie Perez met Cuoco for a coffee — the "Birds of Prey" actor told Looper in December 2020 — during which "The Big Bang Theory" star convinced her to take on the role of Megan Briscoe on "The Flight Attendant." When asked what it was like to work with Cuoco on the HBO Max series, Perez said, "Her niceness, professionalism, and enthusiasm sold me, I believed her when she told me she was going to take care of things."