Ex-Nickelodeon producer responds to alarming allegations from child actors

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) -- Former Nickelodeon producer Dan Schneider posted an apology video online following the release of "Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV," a documentary series that details allegations made against him.

In a video posted to Schneider's YouTube channel, the former producer said the series was "embarrassing," and that he owed some people "a pretty strong apology."

Schneider, who produced shows such as "Drake and Josh," "iCarly," and "The Amanda Show," came under fire in 2022 following a report from Business Insider, which spoke with former cast, writers, and others who worked with Schneider during his days at the network.

FILE - Miranda Cosgrove, Jennette McCurdy, Nathan Kress, Jerry Trainor and Dan Schneider at the MTV Summer 2007 TCA Press Tour at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on July 13, 2007 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Film Magic)

Those interviewed in the new series, which further details the allegations made in the Business Insider article, alleged Schneider played favorites, put young actresses in overly sexually suggestive scenes, and made inappropriate comments to and about women on the crew, including an incident where he asked them to massage him.

“It was wrong that I ever put anybody in that position," Schneider said when talking about the massages. “I apologize to anybody that I ever put in that situation."

In the "Quiet on Set" series, actor Drake Bell also came forward as the John Doe in a child sex abuse case against dialogue coach Brian Peck. Peck and Bell both worked on the Nickelodeon shows "All That" and "The Amanda Show" before Peck's arrest in 2003.

Drake Bell attends the 2019 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcasted live on FOX at Microsoft Theater on March 14, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)

At the time of his arrest, the Los Angeles Police Department said 43-year-old Peck was accused of molesting a child he was coaching at his house over a six-month period. We now know the unnamed child was Drake Bell, who was then 15 years old.

Peck served a 16-month prison sentence and was forced to register as a sex offender. After his release, he returned to entertainment work, including on shows with child actors, like the Disney Channel's "The Suite Life of Zack & Cody."

Schneider said hearing Bell's story "devastated" him. A spokesperson for Schneider, in an email to NBC News, called him a "champion" for child actors.

“Dan has said himself that he was a tough boss to work for and, if he could do things over again, he would act differently,” a spokesperson for Schneider said. “But let’s be clear, when Dan departed Nickelodeon, a full investigation was done and again, all that was found is that he was a challenging, tough and demanding person to work for and with, nothing else.”

Schneider left the network in 2018, according to BBC, after an investigation found he was verbally abusive to employees.

A Nickelodeon spokesperson told NBC News, “Though we cannot corroborate or negate allegations of behaviors from productions decades ago, Nickelodeon as a matter of policy investigates all formal complaints as part of our commitment to fostering a safe and professional workplace environment free of harassment or other kinds of inappropriate conduct. Our highest priorities are the well-being and best interests not just of our employees, casts and crew, but of all children, and we have adopted numerous safeguards over the years to help ensure we are living up to our own high standards and the expectations of our audience.”

Schneider said any inappropriate jokes should be cut out of the shows he worked on but stood behind his previous statement saying the network approved the shows' content, including any potentially suggestive scenes that made it into aired episodes.

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