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Dan Schneider created a Nickelodeon empire that was 'traumatizing' to his cast and crew. Now, it's the subject of a 4-part docuseries.

Dan Schneider created a Nickelodeon empire that was 'traumatizing' to his cast and crew. Now, it's the subject of a 4-part docuseries.
  • Investigation Discovery is releasing a series about toxic work settings on Dan Schneider's shows.

  • BI reported that actors, writers, and crew members said Schneider's sets were "traumatizing."

  • "Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV," based on BI's reporting, premieres on March 17 and 18.

Dan Schneider is a towering figure in Nickelodeon history. Now, his reign — and the allegations of abuse, sexism, racism, and inappropriate dynamics with underage cast and crew that came along with it — is getting the docuseries treatment.

The fall of Schneider's beloved Nickelodeon empire will be the focal point of a new four-part Investigation Discovery docuseries, "Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV," produced by Sony's Maxine Productions in association with Business Insider.

Schneider struck gold on the children's TV network with the '90s sketch series "The Amanda Show" starring the tween idol Amanda Bynes. More success followed in the 2000s as he created popular shows including "Zoey 101," "iCarly," and "Victorious."

But numerous allegations of a hostile work environment Schneider constructed have tainted the sitcoms that defined a generation and put then-unknown actors such as Bynes and Ariana Grande on a path to superstardom.

This alleged toxicity was the subject of an investigation published by BI's Kate Taylor in August 2022, which serves as the basis for "Quiet on Set."

In response to BI's story and news of this documentary, a rep for Schneider said: "Dan cared about the kids on his shows even when sometimes their own families unfortunately did not. He understood what they were going through and he was their biggest champion. The fact is many of the kids on these shows are put in the untenable position of becoming the breadwinner for their family and the pressure that comes along with that. Add on top of that the difficulties of growing up and having to do so under the spotlight while working a demanding job, all as a child. That is why there are many levels of standards, executives, lawyers, teachers and parents everywhere, all the time, on every set, every day. However, it is still a hard place to be a kid and nobody knew that better than Dan."

BI's exposé came shortly after Jennette McCurdy, who starred as Sam Puckett on "iCarly" and its spin-off series "Sam & Cat," detailed her uncomfortable experience on Nickelodeon in her best-selling memoir, "I'm Glad My Mom Died."

Dan Schneider accepts the lifetime achievement award at the 27th annual Kids' Choice Awards at the Galen Center on Saturday, March 29, 2014, in Los Angeles.
Dan Schneider accepting the lifetime achievement award at the 27th Kids' Choice Awards in 2014.Matt Sayles/Invision/AP

In her book, McCurdy spoke of a powerful figure, referred to only as "The Creator," who was controlling and the source of emotional abuse. McCurdy said that this person pressured her into drinking alcohol while underage, yelled at her while she was filming a kissing scene with a costar, and "explicitly" asked that bikinis be included in a wardrobe fitting.

Additional allegations and new revelations came up in Taylor's investigation, which included interviews with actors, writers, and crew members who worked with Schneider on his TV shows.

Alexa Nikolas, who exited "Zoey 101" after two seasons of playing Nicole Bristow, described the on-set work environment to BI as "traumatizing," while a longtime writer called it a "maddening, disgusting, controlling little bubble."

"Victorious" star Daniella Monet told BI that some of the characters' outfits were "not age appropriate" and expressed dissatisfaction with the overly sexualized aspects of the show.

The report also detailed Schneider's requests for massages from adult female colleagues and a gender-discrimination and hostile workplace claim made in 2000.

Directed by Mary Robertson and Emma Schwartz, the two-night docuseries will include never-before-seen archival footage and interviews with Nikolas, "Double Dare" host Marc Summers, "All That" cast members Giovonnie Samuels, Kyle Sullivan, Bryan Hearne, and Katrina Johnson, and more.

Take an exclusive look at the trailer below.

"Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV" will premiere across two nights on ID at 9 p.m. ET on Sunday, March 17, and Monday, March 18.

Read the original article on Business Insider