Why Hasn’t Dan Schneider Had His #MeToo Moment?
(TRIGGER WARNING: Rape/Sexual Assault)
A month ago, Nickelodeon announced they are parting ways with producer Dan Schneider. Schneider’s firing comes amid years of rumors of sexual assault. He is known for having produced several hit children’s television series, including “All That,” “Drake and Josh,” and “iCarly.”
Some of the earliest known public accusations against Schneider date back to 2007, when several anonymous insiders dropped tips and blind items to various outlets suggesting that Schneider had sexually assaulted “Zoey 101” actress Jamie Lynn Spears and is the father of her first child.
In 2013, actress Amanda Bynes (“All That” and “The Amanda Show”) posted a series of tweets accusing Schneider of molesting her as a child. This was in the midst of her widely-publicized meltdown, therefore, the general public quickly dismissed Bynes’s accusations.
While many of the main actors and actresses have remained silent in regards to, a few extras who have had small roles in his projects have anonymously posted stories on message boards and forums. One woman recounts a time when Schneider paid her $100.00 under the stipulation that she let him tickle her feet.
Even if one refuses to believe the accusations without any proof, the signs have been undeniably present in almost all of his works.
The dialogue in Dan Schneider’s projects was often riddled with sexual innuendos and double entendres. To a child, the vulgarities go over one’s head, but to an adult, it’s blatant that they were inserted into the dialogue deliberately.
After Nickelodeon announced their decision to cut ties with Schneider, Twitter user @deludedkiss posted a compilation thread of video clips from Schneider’s shows. The clips are just a few of the examples of the overt sexual innuendos often included in the dialogue of Schneider’s shows.
Apart from the unabashed moans and groans, oral sex double entendres and masturbation simulations, the largest common denominator of the crude jokes is feet.
In almost every one of Schneider’s projects, he has found a way to incorporate bare feet into at least one scene.
The general consensus is Schneider has a foot fetish. In 2013, he posted a tweet inviting fans of his show “Sam & Cat” to tweet him pictures of their feet, as part of a promotional campaign.
Not to mention, at one point, one of the logos outside of Nickelodeon’s Los Angeles studio building was a large animated foot.
Foot fetishes aside, there have also been a few instances in which actors and actresses from Schneider’s shows have indirectly implied that he had been indecent with them.
In 2014, actress Jennette McCurdy posted a bizarre clip on Vine, which sees her covered in what appears to be garbage, with smeared make-up and hair disheveled.
In the six-second clip, McCurdy addresses Schneider saying “I know you’re watching my Vine…Look what you’ve done to me.” The purpose of the video is unclear, however, some viewers saw it as a cry for help, while some believed she was mocking Amanda Bynes, as the clip was posted around the time of her public meltdown.
This isn’t the only peculiar video McCurdy has posted. That same year, she also shared a six-second clip in which she displays multiple bruisers. Many viewers gathered that these bruises were likely given to her by Schneider.
Once Nickelodeon decided to kick Schneider to the curb, it was thought that former Nickelodeon actors and actress would come forward detailing abuse by Schneider.
On the contrary, the news kind of just came and went. None of the people involved in any of his projects have directly come forward and said anything regarding Schneider’s abuse. Although I understand most actors and actresses would likely not want to relive these traumatic moments by sharing accounts of the abuse by Schneider, it’s odd that the firing of one of the most known producers in the industry wasn’t followed by a month-long “#MeToo Moment.”
After actress Rose McGowan publicly accused producer Harvey Weinstein of raping her, several actresses followed suit. So why has nobody directly come forward with accusations against Schneider? Why has nobody filed a lawsuit against him?
Most of the knowledge we have acquired on the Schneider situation is based on hearsay and on anonymous tips from insiders. The day after Nickelodeon announced the cutting of ties with Schneider, a well-known actress, thought to be Amanda Bynes, submitted an anonymous note to infamous celebrity gossip site Crazy Days and Nights. In the note, the anonymous actress thanks the site’s owner for their support over the years, and leaves a cryptic message in the note’s first paragraph.
The capitalized letters in the first paragraph spell “DAN DID IT.” In the second paragraph, the actress notes that she will not be coming forward “for obvious reasons.” If the actress in question is Bynes, perhaps she is not coming forward because she was not well-received the first time she accused Schneider of molesting her.
So why hasn’t anyone else come forward? Were they paid hush money? Are they afraid of retaliation? Are they afraid of being blacklisted within the industry?
The evidence corroborating alleged abuse by Schneider, albeit paltry, is damning. Although the story was seemingly swept under the rug shortly after the news broke, perhaps more of the people previously involved in his projects will come forward in the future.