Melissa Gilbert's Journey: From Child Star on 'Little House' to 'Dancing with the Stars' and Beyond

Melissa Gilbert, the iconic Laura Ingalls from 'Little House on the Prairie', reflects on her career and the show's resurgence, sharing insights into her life and romance with Rob Lowe.

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Israel Ojoko
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Melissa Gilbert's Journey: From Child Star on 'Little House' to 'Dancing with the Stars' and Beyond

Melissa Gilbert's Journey: From Child Star on 'Little House' to 'Dancing with the Stars' and Beyond

Melissa Gilbert, best known for her role as Laura Ingalls on the beloved TV series 'Little House on the Prairie', has had a remarkable career spanning several decades.

Gilbert began her acting career at a young age, starring in the hit show from 1974 to 1983. Her portrayal of the spirited and resilient Laura Ingalls captivated audiences and solidified her place in television history.

Now, 37 years after the series finale, 'Little House on the Prairie' is experiencing a resurgence in popularity. All nine seasons are currently re-airing on Cozi TV and are available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video. This renewed interest has brought Gilbert's early career back into the spotlight, prompting reflections on her time on the show and the impact it had on her life.

In a recent interview with Access Hollywood's Kit Hoover, Gilbert discussed the show's newfound popularity and shared insights into her life during the COVID-19 pandemic. She also reminisced about her young romance with actor Rob Lowe, detailing their first meeting and the connection they shared.

One aspect of 'Little House on the Prairie' that has recently attracted attention is the significant age gap between Gilbert and her on-screen love interest, Dean Butler, who played Almanzo Wilder. Many viewers expressed surprise and discomfort upon learning that Gilbert was much younger than Butler in real life, leading some to view their on-screen kiss as "creepy" or "gross".

However, it is worth noting that the real-life Laura Ingalls and Almanzo Wilder also had a considerable age difference, and the TV adaptation took some creative liberties in portraying their relationship.

Despite the controversy surrounding the age gap, Gilbert's portrayal of Laura Ingalls remains a beloved and iconic part of television history. Her performance captured the hearts of viewers and continues to resonate with audiences today.

Following her success on 'Little House on the Prairie', Gilbert continued to build a diverse career in the entertainment industry. She appeared in various television movies and series, showcasing her versatility as an actress. In 2012, Gilbert took on a new challenge by participating in the popular reality competition show 'Dancing with the Stars'. Her appearance on the show introduced her to a new generation of fans and demonstrated her willingness to step outside her comfort zone.

Throughout her career, Gilbert has faced personal challenges and triumphs. She has been open about her struggles with alcoholism and her path to sobriety. In her memoir, "Prairie Tale", Gilbert candidly discussed the highs and lows of her life, offering a glimpse into the realities of growing up in the entertainment industry.

Today, Gilbert remains an active figure in the entertainment world. She continues to take on acting roles and has also ventured into directing and producing. Her enduring presence in the industry is a legacy of her talent, resilience, and the lasting impact of her early work on 'Little House on the Prairie'.

As 'Little House on the Prairie' finds a new audience and Gilbert reflects on her incredible path, fans are reminded of the timeless appeal of the show and the indelible mark it has left on television history. Gilbert's portrayal of Laura Ingalls will forever be cherished, and her ongoing career serves as an inspiration to aspiring actors and actresses around the world.

Key Takeaways

  • Melissa Gilbert played Laura Ingalls on 'Little House on the Prairie'.
  • The show is experiencing a resurgence in popularity 37 years after finale.
  • Gilbert discussed her young romance with actor Rob Lowe in an interview.
  • Viewers expressed discomfort over the age gap between Gilbert and her on-screen love interest.
  • Gilbert has had a diverse career, including reality TV and directing, since 'Little House'.