“Little House on the Prairie” star Michael Landon is remembered for many things. There was his acting roles, his work as a producer and writer, and more. He was also quite the joker, according to one of the actors who worked with him on the famous frontier family show.
That costar is Alison Arngrim. She played the nasty Nellie Oleson in the series, which aired from 1974 until 1983. She talked about a practical joke Landon played on a crew member during the production of the show during an interview with Pop Goes The Culture TV.
During the interview, Arngrim is asked to confirm if Landon once played a joke on a stuntman by having his costume tightened by the wardrobe department without the stuntman’s knowledge.
“The tightening of the costumes, yes, yes, yes,” Arngrim confirmed with a laugh.
So, why did Michael Landon play this joke on the stuntman? Well, according to Arngrim, Landon found the obsession with weight in Hollywood in general humorous.
“See like I said, you know in Hollywood you have all these insane things where people are pressured about their weight and stuff,” Arngrim said. “And everyone is so obsessed with diet and health and weight, and this was totally true in the 70s. People were just maniacal about this. And (Michael Landon) thought this was really funny that everyone was so vain and obsessed. So yes, there was a story. The stuntman who we worked with who was becoming very vain, obsessed about his weight.
Landon found out about “Little House on Prairie” stuntman’s growing obsession with his weight and came up with the practical joke.
“So, Michael had the wardrobe people tighten his costumes gradually,” Arngrim also said.
‘Little House on the Prairie’ Actress Said Michael Landon Frequently Joked Around on the Set of the Show
Alison Arngrim also said Michael Landon was a frequent joker on the set of “Little House on the Prairie.”
“But, he did that stuff to everyone,” Arngrim said. “I remember him telling a story in makeup that there was this woman how had all these health treatments and mysterious things she ate that she talked about keeping her skin young. And she asked him why his skin looked good and he said, ‘I eat a cup of birdseed every morning.’”
Arngrim said Landon quickly thought of this joke to play on the woman.
“Just off the top of his head,” she said. “‘Yes, cup of raw birdseed. I just wash it down with some coffee.’ And he told her he ate raw birdseed and, you know, she started eating birdseed every morning.”
Fortunately for the woman, Landon did tell her it was a joke.
“I think he only let her do it for a week before he said, ‘You really should not be eating the birdseed dear,’” Arngrim recalled.
You can watch Alison Arngrim talk about “Little House on the Prairie” below. She begins talking about Michael Landon’s practical joke on the stuntman around the 15:50 mark of the video.