“Boy Meets World’s” Danielle Fishel Catfished By A Grown Man At 12

Danielle Fishel was simply 12 years previous when she landed the position of Topanga Lawrence within the ABC sitcom Boy Meets World, which she starred in between 1993 and 2000.

The actor went on to reprise her position within the 2014 sequel sequence Woman Meets World, and earlier this 12 months, she launched a podcast in regards to the beloved ’90s present alongside two of her former costars.

Collectively, Danielle, Rider Sturdy, and Will Friedle cohost Pod Meets World, a sequence the place they talk about their time on Boy Meets World and their consequential experiences as little one stars.

On this week’s installment, the actors took half in a fan Q&A, the place they answered some incessantly requested questions on their lives and the sitcom, which included a question about who used to obtain probably the most fan mail.

The trio instantly agreed that Rider proved to be the most well-liked with viewers, with the actor becoming a member of the present on the age of 14 and taking part in principal character Cory Matthews’s greatest pal, Shawn Hunter.

Actually, Rider revealed that by the “third or fourth” season of the present, he was receiving 1000’s of letters every week, which grew to become “overwhelming” and made him really feel “uncomfortable,” as he was frightened about letting his followers down by not with the ability to reply.

Danielle then shared her personal harrowing expertise with fan mail, which passed off shortly after she joined the present when she was nonetheless a preteen.

The star revealed {that a} grown man wrote to her pretending to be a younger lady, and as soon as they’d established common correspondence, he began to indicate up at her college and inform those that he was there to choose her up.

“When we first started getting fan mail, I also read them all and responded to them all. I got a letter in ’93 from a young girl and she included pictures of herself in it, and she was in gymnastics,” Danielle mentioned, having beforehand defined that she took half in gymnastics earlier than turning into an actor.

(*12*) she went on. “I felt very close to her, and one of the things she talked about regularly was that both of her parents died when she was young and she lived with her older brother.”

Danielle mentioned that within the second letter she acquired, the lady included footage of her brother who was “several years older” and a “good-looking guy.” She additionally mentioned that the lady would repeatedly say that she didn’t know what she’d do with out her brother, as she doesn’t have dad and mom. Then, the lady included her telephone quantity in one of many letters in order that Danielle may name her.

“My mom is participating in me writing back,” Danielle clarified. “She’s reading all these letters as well and she’s aware of what I’m writing and she’s reading what this girl is writing to me, and my mom is like: ‘[It seems like] you would be friends.’”

“So I call her,” Danielle went on. “And I get her voicemail, but it’s not her. It’s her brother’s voicemail because it’s his house. They live in an apartment together, but her name isn’t anywhere on the voicemail.”

At this level in Danielle’s retelling, the penny dropped and Rider exclaimed: “She doesn’t exist! She doesn’t exist — some guy pretending to be a girl, you got catfished!”

Danielle confirmed that that is precisely what occurred, and defined: “The way it all came out is because I kept calling her, and I left my phone number and she wouldn’t call me back. Then we got a letter from her brother saying that she had died, and my mum woke up in the middle of the night and was like: ‘She never existed, it’s always been him!’”

“And then he started showing up at my school and telling people he was there to pick me up,” Danielle advised her shocked costars, with Rider calling the whole factor Danielle’s “first stalker experience.”

The actor didn’t go into element about how the scenario ended, and Rider then shared his expertise of not understanding tips on how to have “clear boundaries” between himself and his followers as a youngster.

“I had girls calling my house when I was like 11, 12, because I was listed in the phone book — or my parents were, in my hometown,” Rider shared. “Back then, I would meet up with them. This was before Boy Meets World, this is when I was on Home Improvement or I had done local plays.”

He added: “Girls would call the house and I’d meet them at an arcade, super awkward. At the time I was like, oh you like me, you saw me on TV, OK I’ll be your friend, let’s hang out, maybe I’ll have a crush on you too! In retrospect, it’s like, no, you have to create boundaries.”

Actually, Rider mentioned that he solely realized tips on how to appropriately work together with followers after he noticed how his Boy Meets World costar, Ben Savage, dealt with being acknowledged after they had been out collectively, with the star saying that Ben had been “so confident and gracious and thankful” whereas signing autographs.

“At that point, if I got recognized I’d be like oh my god, you know me from my TV show, that’s so cool! What’s your name, do you want to go and hang out?” Rider laughed. “It’s not a chance for you to freak out too.”

This isn’t the primary time that the forged has opened up on the podcast in regards to the more difficult elements of being little one actors, having beforehand mirrored on the “horribly uncomfortable” kissing scenes that they needed to movie, in addition to Danielle being publicly humiliated by the present’s creator, Michael Jacobs, on her very first day.

Will and Rider recalled having a distinct background actor to kiss every week throughout their time on the present, with each of their characters being the sitcom’s heartthrobs.

“It was hugely uncomfortable. Everyone talks like, ‘Oh man, you get to kiss all those girls!’ But it’s not as awesome as you might think it is,” Will mentioned. “It really is horribly uncomfortable, and to do it in front of an audience and hearing people go ‘woo’ and all this…”

“We should at least address, especially in this day and age it needs to be talked about, the kind of power disparity that’s going on,” he added. “Because we’re regulars on the show so we have a job and we know we’re going to have a job, and it puts the [guest] actor in a position of saying: ‘I’m not gonna say I don’t want you to put your tongue down my throat.’”

Rider agreed and admitted that all of them would have benefitted from having an intimacy coordinator on set with them, one thing that merely didn’t exist within the ’90s.

“I totally think that it’s a necessary role because you can’t just trust that a director or a producer is going to have the experience or the delicate tone that is required of that situation,” he mentioned.

The group additionally admitted that they felt as if they couldn’t say no to conditions that they weren’t snug with on set, with Danielle saying: “We were actors, it didn’t matter whether or not we were uncomfortable or comfortable with it. Whatever the writer wrote is what you did, and you were made to feel that if something did make you uncomfortable, it was inappropriate for you to express that.”

And in a separate episode, Danielle mentioned that she was “sweating” nearly 30 years later as she recalled the showrunner threatening to fireplace her as a result of he wasn’t glad along with her efficiency in her first rehearsal on the age of 12.

Her recollection infuriated that week’s podcast visitor, director David Coach, who had labored on the present. He responded on the time: “There’s many wonderful things about [Michael Jacobs], but there’s hateful things. This is one. To hear this, you’re sweating? I’m really pissed. It’s enough to make me want to sign off of this podcast. I don’t want to be associated with anything that guy is associated with. This is just not how you do things. I’m glad it became a hit, but this is disgusting.”

Danielle additionally opened up in regards to the big “pay disparity” between her and her male costars, revealing that her agent and father ended up forcing her to boycott a desk learn as a way to receives a commission extra.

In one other podcast episode, Danielle, Will, and Rider addressed their former costar Trina McGee’s experiences of racism on set and confirmed that she might be a visitor on the present within the coming weeks.

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