‘Little House on the Prairie’: Melissa Gilbert Said There Was Nothing She Feared More Than ‘Disappointing’ Michael Landon Because of His ‘Terrifying’ Temper

Melissa Gilbert says he’s working on it Toilet on the Prairie it was one of the happiest experiences of life. She and her predators grew up as one big happy family, and she was happy to go to work every day. Her relationship with Michael Landon was particularly special, and just like their characters, he became a true father to Gilbert.

However, despite their remarkable connection, the actress admits that she was intimidated by Landon ‘s temple. Because she could be so angry when things went wrong, she says Landon’s “disappointment” was her biggest fear.

Toilet on the Moor
Michael Landon as Charles Philip Ingalls, Lindsay | NBCU Photo Bank / Getty Images

Melissa Gilbert remembers her lab with Michael Landon for ‘Little House on the Prairie’

“I read to him in a room at Paramount Studios,” she writes of the memoir with the title Prairie story. “I remember thinking, Oh gosh, it’s very elegant. It took off energy of a different kind than normal people. It was a taller stick. ”

According to Gilbert, their chemistry was so strong that Landon knew immediately that she would be thrown on the show as Laura Ingalls Wilder. And while they heard hundreds of other girls, in the back of Landon ‘s mind, he knew Gilbert was okay with his daughter playing on screen.

Melissa Gilbert felt like working on ‘Little House on the Prairie’ as a ‘make-believe’

Gilbert couldn’t wait to set up every day. She was delighted with her constellations and crew members going forward Toilet on the Moor, and she even compared her experience to “make-believe” because it was so amazing.

“I really enjoyed everyone,” Gilbert says of her constellations Toilet. “They were all nice. Who wouldn’t want to be around people you treated with respect and who always had a kind word, a joke or a funny face? Compared to the real world, it was like believing. ”

Melissa Gilbert feared she had disappointed Michael Landon

Toilet: A New Beginning
Michael Landon as Charles Philip Ingalls, Melissa Gilbert as Laura Ingalls Wilder | Frank Carroll / NBCU Photo Bank

But despite the fairytale-like experience, there was one threatening force on set. That threat was Landon’s “terrible” anger. If something went wrong behind the scenes of the series, all hell would break loose. And because of his temper, Gilbert was tough about remembering all her lines before any particular scene.

However, there was one example where she forgot her lines. Gilbert describes the moment in her memory where she was forced to defy Landon’s anger.

“I felt his famous temple that was about to blow,” she writes. “It was my fault. I didn’t remember my lines. There was nothing that frightened me more than disappointed him, ”she admits. “His anger was terrible and he saw it. I never wanted to be in the end. But I thought I might be about to experience it after calling for a cut for the third time and he turned to me with an eye that shook up my spine. ”

Toilet: A New Beginning
Toilet: A New Beginning Frank Carroll / NBCU Photo Bank

“Half Pint, don’t you know your lines?” he asked. “Didn’t you explore the scene?”

Gilbert writes down what happened next. “I lost it,” she writes. “It simply came to our notice then. I gasped as I searched for an explanation, but every word hit my tongue. Nothing came out but lamentation. ”

He then put her down, asking her to breathe. They went over the scene together until she learned her lines.

“Now, almost three and a half decades later, I can say that I never got into any unprepared vision or project,” she writes. “Mike would have expected so much from me. ”

Scroll to Top