Old School Americana & Nostalgia


Where Was ‘Little House on the Prairie’ Filmed?

Where Was ‘Little House on the Prairie’ Filmed?

Little House on the Prairie remains one of the most beloved series on TV, yet where in the world was the show filmed? Producers probably had several options to choose from for the Michael Landon-starring family drama. As it turns out, being able to film in California was a big deal and probably saved some money.

So, pretty much all of the show’s exterior shots were filmed at the Big Sky Movie Ranch. It is located in Simi Valley, Calif., Collider states. And what about the interior shots? Those took place at Paramount Studios.

A lot of the show’s episodes have the actors and actresses being busy outside. Landon played Charles Ingalls, the patriarch; Karen Grassle played Caroline Ingalls; Melissa Gilbert played Laura Ingalls Wilder; Melissa Sue Anderson played Mary Ingalls; and Sidney Greenbush played Carrie Ingalls.

‘Little House on the Prairie’ Based on Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Books

The books of Laura Ingalls Wilder had a role in creating the series. Ingalls’ stories happen to be found in her books. They share the same name as the series. Walnut Grove, Minnesota, is a real place. It’s where the Ingalls decided to make a home.

For avid TV viewers, the series, which originally ran on NBC between 1974 and 1982, is still available for viewing. Landon’s handprints were definitely all over this show. He also made sure to give his input around scripts and directing episodes.

This is not the first time that Landon offered his input. He tried to do it when he was playing “Little Joe” Cartwright in Bonanza. But Landon became frustrated with the pace of filming those episodes. That explains why Landon would have a problem with executive producer David Dotort.

With Little House on the Prairie, he could run things the way he felt was best to do. It was important to him that the show receive as much attention as possible.

Michael Landon Moved On To ‘Highway To Heaven’

After Little House ended its run, Landon still felt like he had more creative stories to tell. This would lead him to create Highway To Heaven. That series provided more wholesome moments with Landon, again, at the helm.

Gilbert, after Little House and its impending sequel show wrapped up, turned her attention to other things in life. Gilbert has been married for some time to actor Bruce Boxleitner. She divorces him and marries again. This time, it’s to another actor, Thirtysomething star Tim Busfield.

As for Karen Grassle, she has been pretty much retired from acting and show business. In recent years, Grassle has written an autobiography where she talks about her life…and life on Little House on the Prairie.

Now, you might be asking what happens to the buildings on the ranch? Once the show stopped filming, the buildings that made up the Walnut Grove look were taken down.