Dan Schneider Responds to Accusations from ‘Quiet on Set’ Doc

Dan Schneider has issued a response to the Quiet on Set documentary’s accusations.

Even as Drake Bell detailed the sexual abuse that he endured as a young teenager at the hands of now-disgraced dialogue coach Brian Peck, other Nickelodeon alums are discussing Dan Schneider.

From All That to The Amanda Show to Drake & Josh and then iCarly (and related properties), Dan Schneider is responsible for decades of Nickelodeon hits and ratings juggernauts.

But the Quiet on Set documentary accuses him of inappropriate and toxic workplace behavior during those years. Now Schneider is offering up an apology.

A March 2024 YouTube interview shows Dan Schneider.
Speaking to BooG!e on YouTube, Dan Schneider addresses the controversy from his years at Nickelodeon. (Image Credit: YouTube)

‘Quiet on Set’ details a toxic workplace culture behind the scenes

On Sunday, March 17, and Monday, March 18, the four-episode Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV docuseries aired on Investigation Discovery.

The focus was on Viacom, more specifically on Nickelodeon, and most specifically on legendary showrunner Dan Schneider.

The man’s infamous interest in pranks seemed to contribute to the comedies that he helmed. However, they also created a toxic environment where writers felt that they had to jump at his command — even when his demands crossed the line.

Christy Stratton speaks on Investigation Discovery's Quiet on the Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV.
Christy Stratton was a writer on The Amanda Show who described her experiences, including once making herself sick doing a $300 dare for her boss … who then failed to pay her for it. (Image Credit: Investigation Discovery)

To be clear, the docuseries — like Nickelodeon’s due diligence investigations years ago — did not turn up any evidence of sexual abuse or misconduct by Schneider.

There were some writers who felt uncomfortable with some of the “adult” jokes that made their way into shows for children, particularly by way of child stars.

(Truth be told, as someone slightly younger than Amanda Bynes and that generation of Nickelodeon actors, I as a viewer understood most of those jokes at the time. Notably, lots of children’s media includes jokes for adult viewers — for one famous example, see Shrek)

Dan Schneider receives a lifetime achievement award in 2014.
Writer/producer Dan Schneider (C) accepts the Lifetime Achievement Award onstage with actors from his shows during Nickelodeon’s 27th Annual Kids’ Choice Awards held at USC Galen Center on March 29, 2014. (Photo Credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

But not all of the allegations about Dan Schneider were just questionable jokes

Schneider allegedly asked a colleague for a massage at one point. Outside of very specific workplace dynamics (a professional masseur or a sex worker), that is wholly inappropriate for any workplace. Even if there’s no sexual intent.

The larger issue — bigger than the unsettling volume of foot-related humor in his shows and on his social media — was how he allegedly treated his colleagues.

From unethically underpaying people to berating them to making them yell that they were “idiots” or “sluts,” there’s no excuse for how he allegedly treated writers and others on the set.

Dan Schneider presents iParty With Victorious.
Writer/producer Dan Schneider speaks at Nickelodeon’s exclusive premiere for the upcoming primetime TV event of the summer. “iParty with Victorious,” Saturday, June 4, 2011. Many fans of both shows remember the crossover event. (Photo Credit: Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Nickelodeon)

Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV addressed more than just Schneider. In fact, it did discuss adult men in the industry who are accused of sexual misconduct.

Beside the story of a man allegedly emailing a young girl a naked photo of himself, descriptions of Schneider being toxic in the writer’s room can seem secondary.

But the behavior that people — particularly women, judging from those who spoke during the documentary — described is truly inexcusable.

BooG!e and Dan Schneider face each other in March of 2024.
BooG!e sits down with Dan Schneider in a March 2024 YouTube video. (Image Credit: YouTube)

Dan Schneider is responding to the docuseries

BooG!e played T-Bo, a recurring character who sold odd items like pickles on sticks, on iCarly. He sat down with Dan Schneider on his YouTube channel, as you can see below.

“Watching over the past few nights was very difficult,” Schneider expressed during the video. “Me facing my past behaviors, some of which are embarrassing and I regret. I definitely owe some people a pretty strong apology.”

He affirmed: “No writer should ever feel uncomfortable in any writers room, ever. Period. No excuses.”

“Most TV writers, comedy writers have been in rooms and they are aware that a lot of times there are inappropriate jokes made and inappropriate topics come up,” Schneider acknowledged.

“But the fact that I participated in that, especially when I was leaving the room, embarrasses me,” he admitted. “I shouldn’t have done it.”

Schneider then expressed: “I hate that anybody who worked with me didn’t have a good time. There were so many times [while watching the docuseries] that I wanted to pick up the phone and call some of those people and say, ‘I’m so sorry and let’s talk about it and I wish you had a better time and I wish I could have shown you a better experience.”

Drake Bell in January of 2020.
Drake Bell attends Opening Night Of Rock Of Ages Hollywood at The Bourbon Room on January 15, 2020. (Photo Credit: Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Rock of Ages Hollywood)

Not everyone has a Dan Schneider horror story

Some extremely famous, successful people — like Ariana Grande — once worked for Schneider and have not spoken against him. In fact, it does seem to be mostly former writers and producers rather than the child stars themselves who harbor bad memories.

A couple of decades ago, a blind item noted that Schneider — a former child star himself — had worked to help a Nickelodeon minor who had been a victim of sexual abuse, though the abuse was not on set. (Just a reminder, sometimes blind items turn out to be true)

Very recently, Drake Bell identified himself as the previously unnamed victim of dialogue coach Brian Peck. He was 14 and 15 at that time. Schneider revealed that he helped Bell’s mother with her statement for Peck’s sentencing.

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