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Drake Bell accuses Nickelodeon acting coach Brian Peck of sexual assault, here's what we know

Drake Bell accuses Nickelodeon acting coach Brian Peck of sexual assault, here's what we know

Drake Bell on Quiet on Set - The Dark Side of Kids TV
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The actor is opening up about this situation in the upcoming docuseries Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV.

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Best known for the iconic Nickelodeon series Drake & Josh, actor Drake Bell has now disclosed that he endured “alleged emotional abuse by Nick executive Dan Schneider and the physical abuse by Brian Peck,” as reported by Variety. For context, Peck worked as a dialogue and acting coach for Nickelodeon at the time that Bell starred on shows for the network.

These new revelations from Bell come from a new ID docuseries titled Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV. The four-part documentary explores the toxic and dangerous work environment of certain children’s shows from the 1990s and 2000s. While most of the doc appears to focus on Schneider, other individuals are also being named in the series.

“My name is Drake Bell and I came here today to tell my story,” Bell reportedly says in episode 3 of Quiet on Set. The actor then details that he first met Peck while filming season 2 of The Amanda Show for Nickelodeon. Bell’s father, who used to be his manager, got uncomfortable by the interactions he saw between Bell and Peck. Bell’s father alleges that producers told him that Peck was gay and “maybe [he was] just homophobic,” rather than confronting the inappropriate interactions between an adult and a child.

Things escalated when Bell’s father was pushed out of his son’s life, prompting Bell and his mother to stay in Peck’s home in Los Angeles whenever he had a new audition. According to other actors from that time who also speak in the docuseries, spending time or staying over Peck’s house “wasn’t irregular for kids of Nickelodeon.”

Nonetheless, things took for Bell during a particular morning while staying over the acting coach’s residence. “I was sleeping on the couch where I would usually sleep,” Bell says in the documentary. “I woke up to him. I opened my eyes… I woke up and he was sexually assaulting me. I froze and was in complete shock and had no idea what to do or how to react. I have no idea how to get out of this situation.”

Given that he was only 15 years old at the time, Bell didn’t know exactly what to do, and this inappropriate dynamic with Peck “became this secret” between them because he knew that if he stopped going to Peck’s, people would ask questions. Peck was “so apologetic,” saying it would never happen again.

“He figured out how to convince my mom and everyone around [me]. Anytime I would have an audition or anytime I needed to work on dialogue or anything, I somehow ended up back at Brian’s house and it just got worse and worse and worse and worse,” Bell explains in the docuseries. “I was just trapped. I had no way out. The abuse was extensive and it got pretty brutal. I don’t know how to elaborate on that on camera, really. Why don’t you think of the worst stuff that someone could do to somebody as a sexual assault, and then I’ll answer your question. I don’t know how else to put it.”

Over time, Bell started to notice that Peck was allegedly “calculated” individual playing a sort of “mental manipulation” on him. In fact, Bell even claimed that Peck tried to get cast as his father during a reshoot of Drake & Bell. This seemed like a tipping point for Bell to speak up.

“I had to be excruciatingly detailed about every single thing, [every] time that it had happened,” Bell says in Quiet on Set. “The worst part was I had to make a phone call to Brian and get him to admit what he’d done. I said, ‘I’m really struggling with this stuff now. I’m so torn up, I’m so broken, I’m so emotionally distressed right now. Why did this happen?’ He just started a full-on confession. He kept asking me over and over again, he was like, ‘Are we being recorded?’”

Bell has made headlines in recent years for controversial behaviors and statements, and now it all seems to be somewhat connected to this childhood trauma he was keeping as a secret and is only now revealing with the general public. Nonetheless, we’ll get Bell’s full side of the story once Quiet on Set premieres this weekend.

The Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV docuseries premieres Mar. 17 on ID.

If you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence, theNational Sexual Assault Hotline is available 24/7 with free and confidential services. More resources are availablehere.

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Bernardo Sim

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Bernardo Sim experiences and explains queer multiverses. Born in Brazil, he currently lives in South Florida.

Bernardo Sim experiences and explains queer multiverses. Born in Brazil, he currently lives in South Florida.