Melissa Ellen Gilbert was born on 8th May 1964, in Los Angeles, California USA, and was adopted immediately after birth, her name being that of her adoptive parents. Melissa is an actress as well as a television director which are the main sources of her net worth. She rose to prominence as a child actress, becoming well known for her role of Laura Ingalls Wilder in the series “Little House on the Prairie” (1974 – 1983). Gilbert is the winner of three Young Artist Awards, (1982, 1983 and 1984), Golden Boot Award (2000) and TV Land Award (2006).
Is the person who began her career in early childhood wealthy enough? Estimations show that currently Melissa Gilbert’s net worth is as much as $500,000. It has been reported that because of financial difficulties she owes $360,000 in federal income taxes (2015). Previously, she had financial problems and had debts of $112,000 in 2013.
Melissa Gilbert Net Worth $500,000
Regarding the background information, Melissa’s adoptive parents were both celebrities: the actress Barbara B. Crane and actor Paul Gilbert. As a child actress she began her career taking parts in various commercials. Later, she was invited to audition for the Laura Ingalls role together with another 500 applicants. Winning the role, Gilbert appeared in the series for almost 10 years. Afterwards, she starred mainly in television films, including “The Miracle Worker” (1979), “Choices of the Heart” (1983), “Blood Vows: The Story of a Mafia Wife” (1987), “With a Vengeance” (1992), “Shattered Trust: The Shari Karney Story” (1993), “Seduction in a Small Town” (1997), “Then Came Jones” (2003), “Thicker than Water” (2005), “Sacrifices of the Heart” (2007) and many others. What is more, Gilbert landed roles in the feature films “Sylvester” (1985) directed by Tim Hunter and “Safe Harbour” (2007) directed by Bill Corcoran. Melissa Gilbert increased her net worth while acting in television series, including the main roles in the sitcom “Stand By Your Man” (1992), and drama television series “Sweet Justice” (1994 – 1995). As a contestant she took part in the reality competition series “Dancing with the Stars” (2012), which she finished in fifth place overall.
It is worth to mention the fact that Melissa Gilbert served as the president of the Screen Actors Guild for two terms from 2001 to 2005. She refused to take part in the elections for the third term. Undoubtedly, this prestigious position indirectly increased her popularity as well as her net worth.
Melissa also became an author, as a consequence of suffering from drug abuse as well as alcoholism, both of which she overcame. Her struggle with addictions is described in her autobiography “Prairie Tale: A Memoir” (2009). As an author, Melisa Gilbert has added to her net worth by also publishing a book for children “Daisy and Josephine” (2014), and the cookery book “My Prairie Cookbook: Memories and Frontier Food from My Little House to Yours” (2014).
In the rest of her personal life, Melisa has been married three times and given birth to two children. She was married to Bo BrinkmanBo Brinkman, from 1988 to 1992. Afterwards, she married actor and writer Bruce Boxleitner in 1995, but they divorced in 2011. Currently she has been married to actor and film director Timothy Busfield since 2013. Recently, rumours have circulated about Melisa having a number of plastic operations. It can be neither confirmed nor denied but the look of the actress certainly isn’t natural.
Delivered the eulogy at the memorial service for her friend and mentor, Patty Duke, on April 16, 2016. Duke was "Annie Sullivan" to Gilbert's "Helen Keller" in the 1979 production of The Miracle Worker (1979). Similarly, in June 2005, Patty Duke gave the eulogy at Anne Bancroft's memorial service. Bancroft was "Annie Sullivan" to Duke's "Helen Keller" in the original The Miracle Worker (1962) in 1962.
On August 14, 2015, she announced that she is running for a seat in Congress from Michigan.
In her autobiography she lists Charlie Brill as her godfather and his wife, actress/comedienne Mitzi McCall, as her godmother.
Was one of 500 young girls who auditioned for the role of Laura Ingalls Wilder in the TV series Little House on the Prairie (1974) and she was the only one whose screen test was sent to be considered by NBC. It was Michael Landon's daughter Leslie Landon who told Melissa that she had won the role of Laura when the two of them stood in line at their school cafeteria.
Had a combined family with her ex-husband, Bruce Boxleitner: Bruce had two sons, Sam Boxleitner (b. 1980) and Lee Boxleitner (b. 1985). Melissa became a mother when her first child, Dakota Brinkman (Dakota Paul Brinkman), was born on Monday, May 1, 1989, while she was married to Bo Brinkman. She had one son with Bruce, Michael Garrett Boxleitner, who was born on Friday, October 6, 1995.
In national voting completed on Friday, 2 November 2001, she was elected president of the Screen Actors Guild, taking the position held since November 1999 by William Daniels, who declined to run for another term. She held the position until 2005, when she was replaced by Alan Rosenberg.
Adopted half-sister of Sara Gilbert. Sara is the natural daughter of Barbara Cowan and Harold Abeles. Cowan and late husband Paul Gilbert together adopted Melissa and Jonathan Gilbert (they are not biologically related to each other). Sara took her stepfather's surname when she began acting in 1984.
Had a highly publicized relationship with Rob Lowe during the 1980s, and they were reportedly at one time engaged.
Women in their twenties are beautiful. But women in their forties? There's something magical there.
[Of Michael Landon]: I wanted him to be my father substitute. I loved that man and I loved the way I always felt safe, crying with him. Now, granted, it was on film. But generally, I was crying about what was going on with me for real when I was with him. And he was always there to hold me. That's the only time I let that stuff out. So, he was there in most of these scenes, comforting me. It was sort of a father/daughter relationship in my eyes.
[on her on- and off-screen chemistry with Michael Landon, who played Charles Ingalls]: He was very much like a 'second father' to me. My own father passed away when I was 11, so, without really officially announcing it, Michael really stepped in.
[on her own journey]: I saw an opportunity at a time in my career when, like many female actors my age, opportunities are drying up left and right. So for me to have a chance to do something new and create a new facet to my career at 45 is a blessing I just couldn't ignore.
[on what it's like to be famous]: For months you've referred to me as your hero, but it's easy to be brave when I have you to come home to, and hide behind, and hold on to. I wish you the happiest birthday ever... . Let's eat!
[on comparing her co-star's, Karen Grassle's, "Caroline Ingalls" character to her own]: Karen's "Ma" always reminded me of Grace Kelly. My Ma's a little more feisty, a little more earthy, I'm a redhead. So is Ma in this show. So there's some fire under those petticoats.
It reminds people of what we as humans and Americans are capable of if we do it together. We tend to live in bubbles. ... There is very little real sense of community anymore. This show reminds people of that.
[About Little House on the Prairie (1974)]: Not a day goes by that I don't think about it and burst into tears. It's like stepping through a looking glass. There's a part of me that's always going to be Laura. I think every girl has a Laura in them.
Thank God I have four sons. The mother/daughter relationship is one of mankind's great mysteries, and for womankind, it can be hellaciously complicated. My mother and I are quintessential examples of the rewards and frustrations, and the joys and infuriations it can yield.
We take pride in each other - we were meant to be together.