What news could be bigger than a Boy Meets World spin-off? How about finding out who will play Cory and Topanga’s daughter? EW reports that 11-year-old Rowan Blanchard has been cast as Riley Matthews in Disney Channel’s Girl Meets World, which has now officially been given a pilot order. The young actress found out the news only last night that she snagged the role.

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Michael Jacobs, a producer on the spin-off, says, “As soon as Rowan walked into the room, I was reminded of why Ben Savage was loved as Cory Matthews. Rowan is real and accessible and I am hopeful this girl is about to meet a world that will love growing up with her as well.”

When a casting call went out in November, producers described the character of Riley as someone with an “Indelible personality. An adorable girl on the cusp of whatever comes next in life, and wanting to rush into it head first. She is fiercely loyal to her friends, and spends most of her time juggling the obstacles that life throws her way … There is no obstacle in this girl’s world that can dampen her bright spirit and eternal optimism.”

Upon receiving the call, Blanchard tweeted out, “It’s official! I will be playing Riley Matthews in Girl Meets World!! Ahhh Soo Excited! #Blessed instagr.am/p/VDQLWJJdUX/”

This was followed up with congratulatory messages from Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel, who played Cory and Topanga, respectively, in the original series and are set to reprise their roles in the spin-off: Savage said, “I have a beautiful, new daughter. Welcome to the family @rowblanchard! #GirlMeetsWorld.” And Fishel tweeted, “Want to meet my and @BenSavage’s daughter for Girl Meets World? Here she is: @rowblanchard!! Congratulations beautiful girl! Can’t wait!”

Girl Meets World will begin filming the pilot in February, with the show expected to premiere during the 2013-2014 season.

Who is Rowan Blanchard?

You may be asking yourself, who is Rowan Blanchard? You might recognize her from two major films: The Back-Up Plan, starring Jennifer Lopez, and Spy Kids: All the Time in the World, where she played Jessica Alba’s daughter. Off screen, she’s one of the models for Forever 21’s spring collection. She’s also very active on Twitter.

Blanchard has videos on YouTube where she covers songs like “Someone Like You,” “House of the Rising Sun” and “Don’t Rain on My Parade.” The Disney Channel is known for hiring actors that can also sing. Maybe we’ll get the chance to see Riley Matthews sing on Girl Meets World? Here she is performing the Adele hit:

What do you think of this huge announcement? Is Rowan Blanchard the right girl for the part? Or was there another young actress you had in mind? 

Girl Meets World won’t be on the air for a while. But until then, you can add all your favorite shows like 30 Rock, American Idol and The Bachelor to your very own watch-list. Download BuddyTV Guide for free for your phone.

(Image courtesy of WENN)

Jeff Dodge

Staff Writer, BuddyTV

Jeff Dodge, a graduate of Western Washington University, has been a TV news editor for many years and has had the chance to interview multiple reality show stars, including Randy Jackson, Nick Cannon, Heidi Klum, Mel B and John Cena.