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Michael Landon

Michael Landon
Personal information
Birth nameEugene Maurice Orowitz
Birth dateOctober 31, 1936
Place of birthQueens, New York, U.S.
Date of deathJuly 01, 1991(age 54)
Death placeMalibu, California, U.S.
OccupationActor, director, producer, writer
Years active1956 - 1991
SpouseDodie Frasier (1956 - 1962)
(divorced) (1 step-son, 1 adopted son)

Lynn Noe (1963 - 1982)
(divorced) (1 step-daughter, 4 children)

Cindy Landon (1983 - 1991)
(widowed) (2 children)

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Michael Landon (October 31, 1936 - July 1, 1991) was an American actor, writer, director, and producer, who starred in three popular NBC TV series that spanned three decades. He is widely known for his roles as Little Joe Cartwright in Bonanza (1959 1973), Charles Ingalls in Little House on the Prairie (1974 1983), and Jonathan Smith in Highway to Heaven (1984 1989). Landon appeared on the cover of TV Guide twenty-two times, second only to Lucille Ball (TV Guide, July 6, 1991). His twenty-eight years of full-hour television acting surpasses that of TV legends Lucille Ball and James Arness.

Landon produced, wrote, and directed many of his series' episodes, including his shortest-lived production, Father Murphy, which starred his friend and "Little House" co-star Merlin Olsen. In 1981, Landon won recognition for his screenwriting with a Spur Award from the Western Writers of America. Although his youngest daughter Jennifer Landon and Bonanza co-star David Canary, have both won multiple Emmys, Michael Landon was never given the honor.

In 1976, Landon wrote and directed an auto-biographical movie, The Loneliest Runner, and was nominated for two Emmys. He also hosted the annual long-running coverage of the Tournament of Roses Parade with Kelly Lange, also on NBC.

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