Dan Schneider Apologizes in 19-Minute Video Posted to His YouTube Channel

Days after the premiere of Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV, the creator and producer at the center of multiple misconduct allegations has issued an apology.

Dan Schneider Apologizes in 19-Minute Video Posted to His YouTube Channel

On Tuesday, just two days after the premiere of Investigation Discovery’s Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV, a four-part docuseries exposing Nickelodeon’s sordid underbelly during Dan Schneider’s tenure, the producer and creator published his response: a bizarre sit-down interview with one of his former employees.

“Watching over the past two nights was very difficult—me facing my past behaviors, some of which are embarrassing and that I regret,” Schneider told BooG!E, who played T-Bo on iCarly (a show Schneider created and produced) in the 19-minute video. “I definitely owe some people a pretty strong apology.” Frankly, anyone who’s seen the docuseries is likely to call this a gross understatement.

In four episodes, Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV shows how Nickelodeon and Schneider enabled predation and exploitation of its stars like Amanda Bynes, Drake Bell, and a slew of others by employing and working with men like Brian Peck, a dialogue coach who would go on to be convicted of child sexual abuse, and Jason Handy, a production assistant who was a repeat offender of sex crimes involving children—prior to and during his tenure. More than that though, it details accusations of Schneider’s own inappropriate and abusive behavior behind the scenes and his alleged penchant for platforming borderline pornographic material onscreen.

“Working for Dan was like being in an abusive relationship,” Christy Stratton, a writer on The Amanda Show recalled. Stratton was one of two women writers on the show—the two of which, Stratton said, were forced to split their salaries as if the network was “getting two for the price of one.” Jenny Kilgen, the other writer, said Schneider would often refer to them as “the girls” and claimed “women can’t be funny.” Both women also remembered that the last name of Bynes’ most popular character, Penelope Taynt, was inspired by the word “taint.”
“Dan had said to us in the writers’ room, ‘Don’t tell what this word really means.’ He wanted us to keep that a secret,” Kilgen said.
Elsewhere in the docuseries, there are a number of deeply unsettling scenes from several of Schneider’s productions that see child stars acting out sexually suggestive material—many of which were reported by Insider in August 2022. In that investigation, Alexa Nikolas, who appeared in the docuseries and has led multiple protests against the network, described a scene in which her Zoey 101 co-star Jamie Lynn Spears was repeatedly squirted with “goo” that was “the consistency of an egg white.” Nikolas said Schneider found issues with every take, requiring another cast member to spray Spears’ face over and over again. Schneider was reportedly unsatisfied until the teenage actress was hit on the forehead, with the slimy substance dripping down her nose and mouth.

“It’s like a cum shot,” Nikolas recalled hearing a male colleague remark in the report.“We’re talking about a minor. I think Jamie was 13, and they’re squirting stuff on her face to make it look a certain way.”

Other questionable scenes feature Ariana Grande, who starred in Sam & Cat, pouring water over her chest as she lies on a bed, and squeezing a phallic-looking potato in a suggestive way.

An internal investigation by ViacomCBS in 2018 didn’t turn up reports of sexual misconduct, though it did determine Schneider was prone to becoming “verbally abusive” with colleagues. Deadline also reported in 2018 that it was known among staffers that Schneider had a “temper.” Three years later, the New York Times interviewed former colleagues who revealed they felt they had to “walk on eggshells” in his presence and were “uncomfortable” witnessing him text child actors at all hours.

Needless to say: Schneider has a lot more to do than stage a “strong apology” in response to all of this.

In an email sent to Jezebel by Schneider’s Bakery (Schneider’s television production company), it’s specified by Schneider’s representative that the sit-down with BooG!e was prompted by the actor who “watched Quiet on Set and reached out to Dan to see if he could ask him some questions about it.”

“BooG!e wants to make clear though that he is not a journalist and wasn’t trying to be,” the email reads. “He was offering to provide a platform for Dan to confront a lot of his previous behaviors. BooG!e thought it was something worth doing if Dan was into it, so people could hear from Dan.” Even still, the interview was published by Schneider’s YouTube channel…

Elsewhere in the email, three bullet points (along with explanations) break down the highlights of the interview lest anyone choose not to spend 19 minutes of their life watching it:
1) Dan apologizes, expresses regret and embarrassment and holds himself accountable for his previous behavior.
2) Dan is calling for some of his old jokes to now be cut from the reruns of his old shows.
3) Dan talks about Drake and Amanda and his relationship with his casts.
“He was a jerk at times and if he could do it again he would have been a better boss and a better person,” reads the payoff of number one’s accompanying summary.
I’m sure that’s helpful to the number of former child actors, employees, and the like who’ve been traumatized.

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