Little House on the Prairie was one of the ultimate classics. It was a show where many child stars got their foot into the doorway of Hollywood. One of them was Melissa Sue Anderson who played Mary Ingalls, the spirited young girl who lost her sight. Since her participation in the show ended in 1981, it is a wonder to think what Melissa has been up to. Today, we are going to take a dive into Anderson’s life after Little House on the Prairie.
Melissa Sue Anderson as a Child Star
Mary Ingalls was that loveable little girl from Little House on the Prairie. She was the spirited and spritely one that ended up losing her sight in a tragic accident. Melissa, playing Mary, captured hearts with her acting skills. She found herself well on her way toward becoming a child star.
Born on September 26, 1962, in Berkeley, California, she played Mary From 1974 to 1981. Her performance as the blind daughter navigating the challenges of life on the prairie showcased her undeniable talent, from which she earned international recognition. Melissa worked well with her on-screen family, including Michael Landon, who played her father. As well as Melissa Gilbert, her on-screen sister Laura. This was a true testament to her acting prowess.
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Rumors of a Fallout
During her time on “Little House on the Prairie,” rumors started circulating. It involved Melissa and two of her co-stars. Allegedly, she did not get along as smoothly with Melissa Gilbert and Alison Arngrim as she did with the rest of her co-stars. The rumors suggested a tumultuous on-set atmosphere, but they were later proven to be untrue. In reality, Anderson enjoyed friendly relationships with her co-stars, and any disagreements were merely part of the normal dynamics that can arise in any workplace.
Wishing a happy birthday to Melissa Sue Anderson (aka beloved Mary Ingalls)! Read her biography here! #LittleHouseMoment #LHOTP #HappyBirthday https://t.co/zqhtdMD1L6 pic.twitter.com/TX9AY644lq— Little House on the Prairie® (@LHPrairie) September 26, 2019
Melissa Sue Anderson’s Life After Little House on the Prairie
In 1981, Melissa Sue Anderson bid farewell to Walnut Grove, the town that the Little House on the Prairie family lived near. After that, Melissa embarked on a new chapter in her life. She continued her acting career, venturing into various television films and series. She appeared in projects such as “Murder, She Wrote,” and “Where Pigeons Go to Die.” Her commitment to her work and ability to tackle diverse roles formed the foundation from which she worked.
Melissa was also offered the role of Emmeline Lestrange in “Blue Lagoon.” This was the part that Brooke Shields ended up playing. Melissa decided against it as she did not want to do the nudity scenes. Instead, she took a role in a horror movie called: Happy Birthday to Me (1981).
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#melissasueanderson alias #maryingalls participera au @festivaltvmc . Une occasion unique pour les fans de #lapetitemaisondanslaprairie de la rencontrer! #lpmdlp pic.twitter.com/8BEjM5LDzF— Asso Prairie Land (@assoprairieland) May 27, 2022
In addition to her acting pursuits, Melissa liked to dabble with a word or two here and there. She wrote a memoir of her life, titled: “The Way I See It: A Look Back at My Life on Little House.” It was published in 2010 and provided fans with a glimpse into her experiences on the beloved show. It showcased how it affected her life, during and after production. Melissa’s memoir was well-received and allowed her fans to connect with her on a deeper level.
We’re off for a week for Memorial Day / Indy 500. This gives us time to really prepare for the epic two parter Memories of Manon, featuring Melissa Sue Anderson! @MelissAnderson #TheEqualizer pic.twitter.com/Wi44iEKsHk— The Equalizers Podcast (@equalizerspod) May 28, 2022
As time went on, Melissa Sue Anderson decided to give up on her acting life. she wished to place her focus on her personal life. Melissa married writer and producer Michael Sloan in 1990, and they have two children together, Piper and Griffin Sloan. She may not be acting anymore, but she has remained beloved in the hearts of her fans.
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- “Melissa Sue Anderson.” Biography. September 30, 2020.
- “Where is actress Melissa Sue Anderson now? Her Wiki: Husband, Net Worth Today, Family, Children, Wedding.” Affair Post. Richard Elliot. September 16, 2022
- “Is Melissa Sue Anderson Still Alive? Where Is Melissa Sue Anderson Now?” Fresher Live. Rajalaxmi Sahoo. February 08, 2023.