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Why Did Joe Gatto Leave Impractical Jokers? What He’s Up To Now

Why Did Joe Gatto Leave Impractical Jokers? What He’s Up To Now

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Joe Gatto confused strangers on the street for ten years on the hidden camera show Impractical Jokers. But he surprised his audiences the most when he announced at the end of 2021 that he was leaving the show.

Even before Impractical Jokers, Gatto was entertaining audiences with The Tenderloins in live shows and internet videos. So why did he suddenly decide to leave the group and the show?

Read on to find out what happened to Joe Gatto, why he left Impractical Jokers, and what he’s been up to since leaving.

Why Did Joe Gatto Leave Impractical Jokers?

Joe Gatto left Impractical Jokers due to personal issues and to focus on co-parenting his two children after he separated from his wife.

Gatto is a member of the comedy group The Tenderloins, which also consists of James “Murr” Murray, Brian “Q” Quinn, and Sal Vulcano, along with a few other rotating members. After gaining popularity with stage shows and online videos, the group created Impractical Jokers for truTV.

The show involves The Tenderloins daring each other to preform silly or embarrassing acts in public; the general public isn’t aware of the dare, while the “joker” acting it out often receives instructions on what to do from the others via an earpiece.

The show began in 2011 and was very successful, with Joe Gatto featuring in the majority of episodes until season 9. Then, in 2021, Gatto announced his decision to leave the show via an Instagram post. “Due to some issues in my personal life,” Gatto explained, “I have to step away.”

Gatto went on to admit that he and wife Bessy had “decided to amicably part ways.” In the aftermath of the separation, Gatto said, “I focus on being the best father and co-parent to our two incredible kids.”

What Is Joe Gatto Doing Now?

Since leaving Impractical Jokers in late 2021, Joe Gatto has kept himself busy with his family and with solo projects.

In March 2022, Gatto began co-hosting the podcast Two Cool Moms with fellow comedian Steve Byrne. Inspired by their mothers’, the two give wholesome “motherly” advice to strangers.

Gatto also had a small role in Clerks III in 2022 and voiced a character in the 2022 videogame MulltiVerse.

Throughout 2023, Joe Gatto has been touring across the country with his solo show “Joe Gatto’s Night of Comedy.” And not only is Gatto doing his own touring stand-up shows, but he has also reconciled with his wife, Bessy.

Just a year after announcing their decision to split, Gatto posted again on Instagram to say the two were back together. “[…] I’m happy and hopeful that we will be able to get a few more in because we have proven with compassion, forgiveness and an open heart we can do this. Together.”

Gatto expressed his love for his wife, writing, “10 years ago when we started out, I could have never imagined the absolute crazy ride with highs and lows our marriage has endured. But there was always love. And me knowing that there is no one else I’d want to be my person.

“I love your compassion, your resilience and your giggle. Thanks for this decade.”

 Joe Gatto ended his post by saying, “Looking forward to more of it all, including laughing together, memory making with our incredible family and of course…dogs. Love you so much Mrs. Gatto.”

Did Impractical Jokers Replace Joe Gatto?

To replace Joe Gatto, Impractical Jokers had celebrity guests on the show for season 10. Each regular episode (not including a clip show) was named after the guest appearing on the show.

The season 10 guests included Bret Michaels, Bruce Campbell, and Kesha. There’s no word yet on whether the show will continue this format for season 11, or if season 11 is happening at all.

Will Joe Gatto Return To Impractical Jokers?

Joe Gatto has no immediate plans to return to Impractical Jokers but says he doesn’t see why it couldn’t happen in the future.

After leaving Impractical Jokers to focus on his family, Gatto also pursued a solo comedy career. He tours throughout the country but says it was a difficult transition from group comedy to solo.

The four main actors Joe Murray, Brian Quinn, Joe Gatto, and Sal Volcano in an Impractical Jokers promtional image

“To be talking for an hour by yourself up there instead of a collaboration is different, and also creating the content is different,” Gatto told Scheana Schay on her podcast Scheananigans. His friendship with The Tenderloins is a key reason he’d be open to returning to Impractical Jokers.

“I love touring with the guys, we all love touring together. It makes it a little less lonely.”

Gatto says that while returning to the show is “just not in the cards for me, or [The Tenderloins], or us, right now,” he thinks it could happen at some point. “’ll never say never,” he said. “I don’t see it in the immediate future, but I love creating with them.”

“It was a decade of my life. It was a big part of my life for a while,” Gatto explained. “I miss working for my friends, of course, what a job that is, right?”

Even so, Gatto thinks a stage show is more likely than a return to TV. ““I think on stage might happen first. [It’s] easier because you’re in charge of that. You don’t have to sign off on a new show or whatever, you just get out there and do it.”