Will THIS Project Be the One?

So my Google alerts, um, alerted me to this story yesterday about yet another Laura Ingalls Wilder project in the works. This comes from Pineapple Express director David Gordon Green, who was quoted as saying he has read Little House in the Big Woods. (We will generously assume that was only the beginning of his research.)

Will it work? Impossible to know. I’m glad someone’s trying, though, even if he’s the eleventy millionth one to do so.

Which LIW projects outside of the books did you enjoy the most? Here’s my admittedly fully biased opinion, in no particular order:

Beyond the Prairie: The one The Wilder Life author and LauraPalooza guest Wendy McClure affectionately refers to as “the one with the crazy Dawson’s Creek girl“—and I concur with the description—had pretty much nothing going for it. Bad clothes, bad hair, bad everything. It creeped me out. And I still have trouble with that name “Loudermilk.”

Little House, the Musical. (Click just to hear the music!) I loved this. I loved it in Minneapolis, I loved it in New Jersey, and I loved it in Denver. Even with the mis-pronounciation of Manly’s name. Kara Lindsay brought a dimension to Laura I didn’t think I could discover; Kevin Massey became Almanzo in the flesh in a way I never thought possible. The two knelt down for a sweet little wedding at every performance—and then did it for real this past year. Swoon. (And let’s not forget Carly Rose Sonenclar, who played Carrie, made her own splash last year on The X Factor. Remember?)

Little House on the Prairie Disney miniseries. I waxed poetic about this Friendly production in the Homesteader already. Suffice it to say: it could have worked. It really could have worked. But it didn’t. (Although I don’t think Mary could ever be cast more perfectly.)

Rose books. I count these as Laura experiences outside the realm of the books. Tell me I’m not the only one who was excited to read about Laura debating. Resolved: the Rose books feel just a teensy bit like a Laura continuation.

What say you? Which LIW projects worked—or didn’t work—for you?

Posted in Cultural Impact, Little House in the News, Musical--Little House on the Prairie, Random Little House Sightings, The Homesteader Newsletter, Writings About Laura
5 comments on “Will THIS Project Be the One?
  1. Natalie says:

    I wish I could say I’ve seen the musical. Laura and musical just sounds wonderful to me!

    As for Beyond the Prairie UGH don’t get me started!

  2. Betsy says:

    I have yet to see a TV movie of LIW that is authentic without being cloying, and downright wrong. Get the hair colors right, producers! And not putting a beard on Pa is wrong, wrong, wrong. The beard in itself is a character in the books almost! I’ve always wished someone would do a Kevin Sullivan-esque mini-series like what was done for Anne of Green Gables (at least the first two).

  3. Laura Welser says:

    I did enjoy the Rose books. But, boy, I loved the musical. I loved it in Minneapolis and I loved it in Detroit!
    I really wish there could be a big (or little) screen Little House production that worked, that we could all say we LOVED! 🙂

  4. naomi says:

    The only one of these I’ve seen or read were the Rose books. I enjoyed them a lot when I read them (and still re-read them a lot), but I’ll confess to one disappointment. I remember when they first came out, thinking that unlike most of the other spin-off books, (Laura’s parents and grandparents) they were likely to be fairly accurate historically — the author, after all, knew Rose well, she was a writer herslf and left lots of records, so he surely based most of it on ‘real’ events and people. So I was distressed to learn later that so much of it WAS made up — Swiney and his family, Alva and her family … all fictional. (Blanche was real. Paul and his family were real, but what happened to them, and their relationship with the Wilders was not.) “Bachelor Girl” is an almost word-for-word rewrite/plagerism/homage/ of a fiction book Rose wrote.

  5. Adkmilkmaid says:

    I second the motion for a Kevin Sullivan-esque treatment of Little House such as was done for Anne of Green Gables (and yes, just the first two Anne movies, after which Sullivan succumbed to the lure of dollars).

    As someone who treasures the history I have never been able to pick up, much less read, any of the spin-off books (the Rose stories … never knew there were Caroline and Charles ones — ugh!) To me those are just someone cashing in, and therefore distasteful to me.