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Drake Bell Slams ‘Empty’ Response From Nickelodeon After ‘Quiet on Set’ Abuse Revelations

In his first interview since the release of the documentary “Quiet on Set,” Drake Bell said that he has been disappointed by Nickelodeon’s response to the abuse he suffered at the hands of “Amanda Show” dialogue coach Brian Peck. Speaking on “The Sarah Fraser Show” podcast on Friday, Bell said, “There’s a very well-tailored response saying, ‘Learning about his trauma,’ because they couldn’t say that they didn’t know about this or what had happened, or anything.”

“So I think that was a really well-tailored response by probably some big attorney in Hollywood.”

Bell continued, “I find it pretty empty, their responses, because, I mean, they still show our shows, they still put our shows on. And I have to pay for my own therapy, I have to figure out what — I mean if there was any truth behind them actually caring, there would be something more than quotes on a page by obviously a legal representative telling them exactly how to tailor a response.”

When the documentary revealed Bell as the victim of Brian Peck’s abuse, Nickelodeon said in a statement, “Now that Drake Bell has disclosed his identity as the plaintiff in the 2004 case, we are dismayed and saddened to learn of the trauma he has endured, and we commend and support the strength required to come forward.”

Bell said that he participated in the documentary because he felt comfortable with producers, and that a team working on a separate documentary had previously reached out to him. When he declined to participate in the latter, he was told he was part of the problem.

“[Another documentary] requested my involvement, and when I declined, the response I got was unbelievable,” Bell explained. “In the email, they said that people like me were the problem, and this is why things aren’t gonna change in the industry because people like you won’t speak out and won’t come forward.”

“It was just all this shaming of me not wanting to be a part of their documentary. So I’ve always been cautious and on-edge whenever approached to talk about such a sensitive topic.”

The pair also spoke about former Nickelodeon producer Dan Schneider, who has been accused of inappropriate behavior by other stars and coworkers. Bell said that Schneider helped him through his own trial against Peck. “I can’t take anything away from anyone’s experience, especially things I didn’t see, or things I wasn’t there for. I can only speak to what my experience was, and at that time no Nickelodeon executives reached out to me,” he explained.

“When Dan reached out to me, it was prior to the court hearing where everyone was there. And so it made sense for him to ask me, ‘Does this have anything to do with you? Did Brian hurt you? Are you OK?'” he continued.

“I had worked with Dan for quite some time at this point and I felt comfortable enough in our relationship to be able to open up to him more than I would probably somebody else, and I just told him I said, ”Yeah Dan, this is what he’s been doing and this is what he did,’ and I think he was being sensitive to me because he knew what I was probably dealing with but I could tell in his voice that there was a lot of hurt and anger,” Bell concluded.

Elsewhere in the interview, Bell only had nice words about his “Drake and Josh” costar Josh Peck (no relation to Brian Peck). He explained, “We’ve had our ups and down, but we’re like brothers. Sometimes you want to hang out with your brother and sometimes you want to knock him in the head.”

“At the end of the day, I think we do have a really special relationship and I would always be there for him and I know that he would be the same,” Bell added while crying. “I know that there’s been some catty remarks and things that have been said by him and by me, but I don’t want the public jumping on him because he has, in my times of struggle and times of pain, he has been somebody there that has been really important and special throughout my life. You can’t put a price on that. It’s something that’s very unique, especially in this industry.”

The Investigation Discovery documentary series takes a hard look at the alleged sexual abuse, racism, and sexism that pervaded the sets of several Nickelodeon series during the early ’90s and 2000s. In the series, Bell’s father Joe said that he was alarmed by the way Peck found ways to unnecessarily touch his son when he came on to the show’s team in its second season.

“Then, he’d maybe walk over to Drake, be feeding him lines or something and put his arms around his waist,” Joe said. “Put his hand up on his shoulder, run it down his arm, things like that and this would happen routinely. It was just always uncomfortable.”

When Joe voiced his concerns to a producer, he was told he might be homophobic. Soon, the cast and crew began to ignore Joe when he was on set. Eventually, Peck convinced Bell to cut his dad out of his career. Once his father was no longer his manager, Peck began to take Bell to auditions himself. One morning, Bell woke up to find Peck sexually assaulting him.

Bell finally told his mother what was happening in 2003. Peck was eventually sentenced to 16 months in jail. Bell was identified only as John Doe throughout the court case, and his identity was kept a secret until the release of the documentary series.

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