Drake Bell Says He and Josh Peck Will Always Be There for Each Other

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Originally appeared on E! Online

Content warning: this story discusses sexual assault.

Drake & Josh's bond remains strong.

Drake Bell spoke about his relationship with former Nickelodeon costar Josh Peck, who reached out to him after he revealed on the docuseries Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV that he was sexually abused at age 15 by a dialogue coach.

"We've had our ups and downs, but we're like real brothers. Sometimes you want to hang out with your brother, sometimes you want to knock him in the head," Drake, 37, said on the March 22 episode of the Sarah Fraser Show podcast. "But 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."

Drake, who had feuded with his Drake & Josh stepbrother in 2022, continued, "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, in my times of struggle and times of pain, he has been somebody there that's been really important and special throughout my life."

Child Stars Then and Now

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On Quiet on Set, released on Investigation Discovery several days ago, Drake spoke out publicly for the first time about being sexually abused by Brian Peck, a dialogue coach who worked with him on Nickelodeon's The Amanda Show. (Peck was sentenced in 2004 to 16 months in prison after pleading no contest to a count apiece of lewd act upon a child 14 or 15 by a person 10 years older and oral copulation of a person under 16, according to legal documents reviewed by E! News.)

Drake Bell, Josh Peck
Emma McIntyre/Getty Images; Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

After the docuseries aired, Josh, who is not related to Brian, contacted Drake. "He has reached out to talk with me," the latter star said on TikTok March 20, "and help me work through this and has been really great."

Drake Bell, Josh Peck, Kids' Choice Awards, 2004

A day later, Josh wrote on Instagram that it took him "a few days to process" what he saw on the docuseries. "I reached out to Drake privately," he said, "but want to give my support for the survivors who were brave enough to share their stories of emotional and physical abuse on Nickelodeon sets with the world."

On the podcast, Drake said several people reached out to him after the docuseries aired. "The response has been really great, a lot of support," he said. "But when you're talking about something that you kept inside for so long and you're finally getting it out and being able to process it and work through it, it's an emotional roller coaster."

Regarding Drake's revelation on Quiet on Set, Nickelodeon said in a statement to NBC News, "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."

On the podcast, Drake called the cable network's statement "a very well-tailored response," adding, "I find it pretty empty."

Read on for more revelations from the Quiet on Set documentary:

Drake Bell Says He Was Sexually Abused at 15

<p>Drake Bell Says He Was Sexually Abused at 15</p>

Drake Bell Describes How Brian Peck Got Him Alone

<p>Drake Bell Describes How Brian Peck Got Him Alone</p>

Dan Schneider Reaches Out

<p>Dan Schneider Reaches Out</p>

Brian Peck's Support System in Hollywood

<p>Brian Peck's Support System in Hollywood</p>

<p>Thicke <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/815761/growing-pains-star-alan-thicke-dead-at-69" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:died in 2016;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">died in 2016</a>. E! News has reached out to reps for Marsden, Killam, Friedle, Strong and Kerns for comment but has not heard back.</p> <p>But, as Taylor noted in the ID series, it was entirely possible that none of the actors knew the extent of the charges against Peck when they wrote the letters.</p> <p>Kerns said in a statement included in <em>Quiet on Set</em> that she had since learned that her letter was based on "complete misinformation. Knowing what I know now, I never would have written the letter."</p> <p>Strong and Friedle <a href="https://www.usatoday.com/story/entertainment/celebrities/2024/02/19/boy-meets-world-will-friedle-rider-strong-grooming-manipulation-brian-peck/72661762007/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:recently expressed regret for standing by Peck;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">recently expressed regret for standing by Peck</a>, who appeared on a couple of episodes of <em>Boy Meets World</em> in 1999. They said on a February episode of <em>Pod Meets World</em>, which they cohost with <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/danielle_fishel" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Danielle Fishel;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link "><strong>Danielle Fishel</strong></a>, that they didn't know the real story at the time.</p> <p>"He didn't say that nothing had happened," Strong said. "So, by the time we heard about this case and knew anything about it, it was always in the context of, 'I did this thing, I am guilty. I am going to take whatever punishment the government determines, but I'm a victim of jailbait. There was this hot guy. I just did this thing, and he's underage.' And we bought that storyline."</p> <p>Added Friedle, "We're sitting in that courtroom on the wrong side of everything. The victim's mother turned and said, 'Look at all the famous people you brought with you. And it doesn't change what you did to my kid.' I just sat there wanting to die. It was like, 'What the hell am I doing here?' It was horrifying all the way around."</p>

Brian Peck's Creepy Pen Pal

<p>Brian Peck's Creepy Pen Pal</p>

Kid-Friendly Programming?

<p>Kid-Friendly Programming?</p>

<p>In fact, slimy substances hitting girls in the face was a repeat joke in a number of Schneider's shows, including <em>Zoey 101</em>, as pointed out in the ID series by <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/jamie_lynn_spears" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Jamie Lynn Spears;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link "><strong>Jamie Lynn Spears</strong></a>' costar <strong><a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1361367/zoey-101-star-alexa-nikolas-slams-zoey-102-news-after-protesting-against-nickelodeon?query=zoey%20101" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Alexa Nikolas;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">Alexa Nikolas</a></strong>. (She and <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1341270/the-biggest-bombshells-from-jennette-mccurdys-memoir-im-glad-my-mom-died?query=i%27m%20glad%20my%20mother%20died" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:iCarly alum Jennette McCurdy;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link "><em>iCarly </em>alum <strong>Jennette</strong> <strong>McCurdy</strong></a> are among the former Nickelodeon actors who have previously <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1343819/jennette-mccurdy-felt-self-righteous-when-she-allegedly-turned-down-hush-money-from-nickelodeon?query=dan%20schneider" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:spoken out against the network;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">spoken out against the network</a> for <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/ChskYKdKdBQ/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:failing to protect young talent;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">failing to protect young talent</a>.)</p> <p>"It was just uncomfortable," Frierson said in the series. But, he added, no one thought to complain to Schneider. "It was important to be on his good side," the now-37-year-old said of the <em>All That </em>writer-producer, "and he made it known who was on his good side."</p>

<p>A spokesperson for Schneider told E! News, "Everything that happened on the shows Dan ran was carefully scrutinized by dozens of involved adults and approved by the network. If there was an actual problem with the scenes that some people, now years later, are 'sexualizing,' they would be taken down, but they are not, they are aired constantly all over the world today still, enjoyed by both kids and parents."</p> <p>"Remember, all stories, dialogue, costumes, and makeup were fully approved by network executives on two coasts," the rep continued. "A standards and practices group read and ultimately approved every script, and programming executives reviewed and approved all episodes. In addition, every day on every set, there were always parents and caregivers and their friends watching filming and rehearsals. Had there been any scenes or outfits that were inappropriate in any way, they would have been flagged and blocked by this multilayered scrutiny. </p> <p>"Unfortunately, some adults project their adult minds onto kids' shows, drawing false conclusions about them."</p>

Unrealistic Expectations

<p>Unrealistic Expectations</p>

Not the Right Tone

<p>Not the Right Tone</p>

<p>A spokesperson for Schneider diusputed this characterization, noting the producer's "long history prominently featuring Black actors in his television shows," as well as his subsequent TV and film projects with <em>All That</em> breakout stars <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/kenan_thompson" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Kenan Thompson;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link "><strong>Kenan Thompson</strong></a> and <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1368506/fire-up-the-grill-a-good-burger-sequel-with-kenan-thompson-and-kel-mitchell-is-actually-happening?query=kel%20mitchell" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Kel Mitchell;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link "><strong>Kel Mitchell</strong></a>.</p>

Two for the Price of One

<p>Two for the Price of One</p>

<p><em>Quiet on Set</em> noted: "Dan Schneider denies Jenny's claims and states that he had no control over salaries."</p> <p>A spokesperson for Schneider reiterated as much to E! News, noting <em>The Amanda Show</em> was produced by a different company (Tollin/Robbins), but even on shows he created, salaries "were controlled by the network and also by the WGA."</p> <p>As for these recollections of Schneider's behavior, "unfortunately writers' rooms were often off-color places, especially more than 20 years ago," the spokesperson said. <br>"Dan is extremely sorry for his behavior that contributed to that environment and he has grown a lot since then. That behavior is clearly wrong and not for the workplace, and certainly he would never act that way again."</p>

Where Drake Bell Is Now

<p>Where Drake Bell Is Now</p>

<p>His own experience as a teen "led to a lot of self-destruction and a lot of self-loathing," Bell said in the series. "I would try and just escape with alcohol abuse, substance abuse, really just anything to escape." As for his 2021 arrest, "I took responsibility for that, did what was asked of me, but the media grabbed a hold of so much misinformation, and it absolutely destroyed me. And I started to spin out of control."</p> <p>In April 2023 he was <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1371293/nickelodeons-drake-bell-considered-missing-and-endangered-by-florida-police" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:reported missing;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">reported missing</a> in Daytona Beach, Fla., but <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1371315/nickelodeons-drake-bell-found-safe-after-going-missing-in-florida" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:he turned up the next day;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">he turned up the next day</a> and <a href="https://www.eonline.com/news/1371362/drake-bell-breaks-silence-on-mystery-disappearance" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:laughed it off;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">laughed it off</a>. "You leave your phone in the car and don't answer for the night and this?" he tweeted at the time. Earlier that year, however, he had <a href="https://people.com/tv/drake-bell-enters-outpatient-treatment-after-separation-from-wife-janet-von-schmeling/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:reportedly sought outpatient treatment;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">reportedly sought outpatient treatment</a> for substance abuse.</p> <p>In the series, the <em>Ready Steady Go! </em>artist said that if he'd "continued down that path," it might have been the end of him.</p> <p>He hit "rock bottom," he continued, so he checked into treatment, where he finally underwent grief and trauma therapy, "surrounded by people who for the first time in a long time wanted to just see me get better."</p>

Dan Schneider Would "Do Things Differently"

<p>Dan Schneider Would "Do Things Differently"</p>

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