“Little House” Actress Shannen Doherty Opens Up About Michael Landon

hannahfromgallifrey / YouTube, Little House on the Prairie / YouTube

Little House on the Prairie had a rotating cast throughout its nine season run on NBC, and one of those actors was Shannen Doherty.

Doherty joined the cast in Season Nine and she was in the three post-series movies, which aired from December 12, 1983 to December 17, 1984.

Who did Shannen Doherty play on Little House on the Prairie?

You may know Doherty from the teen drama Beverly Hills, 90210 or the hit show Charmed, but before she was playing Brenda Walsh from Minnesota, she was known as Jenny Wilder.

Doherty joined the cast of Little House on the Prairie as the niece of Laura Ingalls Wilder and Almanzo Wilder. Her character is the only daughter of Royal Wilder, Almonzo’s brother.

She was introduced after Laura and Almonzo had their daughter, Rose. She and her father, Royal, came to town because he was terminally ill. He asked his brother to take care of Jenny after he died, which he did in the first episodes of Season Nine.

Laura and Almonzo adopted her and she lived with them the rest of the series and for the movies as well.

Shannen Shares Fond Memories of The Show

During a recent episode of her podcast, Let’s Be Clear with Shannen Doherty, the actress did a Q&A with questions submitted by her fans. One fan asked if she had “any favorite memories” about starring on the Little House On The Prairie when she was just a kid.

She replied, “I got to work with Michael Landon — that’s one of my all-time favorite memories.”

Landon of course played Ingalls family patriarch, Charles, and was a television legend long before Doherty met him.

Doherty continued, saying that she learned so much from him.

“He directed some of the episodes and wrote some of the episodes. I just remember how he was as a director…[he] definitely helped me realize what kind of director I wanted to be.”

She added that his style of directing “gave an example to me of being so concise and so thorough and so prepared, and really confident in his choices as a director. I admired that, and I took it with me.”

In another part of the episode, she revealed that Landon had taught her to “be true to myself,” and that “he taught me to embrace my voice, to stand up for myself.”

She explained that he also taught her how to play cards, in particular a game called Liar’s Poker, during the down time they had on set.

“I loved Michael,” she said.

Listen to the full episode here