Melissa Joan Hart Reacts To 'Quiet On Set' Allegations

Melissa Joan Hart is showing support for her former Nickelodeon colleagues amid the release of “Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV,” an Investigation Discovery docuseries in which Drake Bell of “Drake & Josh” fame alleges he was sexually abused by a Nickelodeon dialect coach as a teenager.

Hart rose to fame as a Nickelodeon child star herself, and remains best known for “Clarissa Explains It All” and ABC’s “Sabrina the Teenage Witch.” Her appearance Thursday on the podcast “Meghan McCain Has Entered the Chat” makes her the latest Nickelodeon alum to speak out.

“No one’s come to me and talked to me about any of these situations,” she told McCain. “And that’s not to say anything about anyone’s story — I absolutely trust them, believe them 100% — but my experience was that I was in Orlando from 1989 to 1993 or 1994.”

Hart was 14 when she landed the starring role in “Clarissa,” and spent the next four years filming the sitcom while preparing for college. The actor told McCain she had a “wonderful” experience on set.

However, other former stars have said their experiences at the channel were very different. Bell alleged in “Quiet on Set” that Nickelodeon dialect coach Brian Peck sexually abused him during production of “Drake & Josh” in Los Angeles. Several network alums havespoken out in support of Bell.

“I think maybe there was a difference between Hollywood Nickelodeon and Orlando Nickelodeon,” Hart told McCain, referring to the channel’s production studio in Florida.

“In Orlando, I had nothing but a wonderful experience,” Hart added. “We were in Florida, which was a right-to-work state, so they did work the kids a lot harder than they probably legally should — but we had a ton of fun. It was just long hours, that’s all.”

Melissa Joan Hart rose to fame as a teenager with Nickelodeon's
Melissa Joan Hart rose to fame as a teenager with Nickelodeon's "Clarissa Explains It All." Rob Kim via Getty Images

According to court documents obtained in 2015 by the Daily Mail, Peck was accused in 2004 of child molestation and pleaded no contest. He was reportedly convicted of a lewd act against a child and oral copulation of a person under 16, and spent 16 months in prison.

“I don’t know other people’s experiences, and I’m not negating anything anyone else says,” Hart told McCain. “I’ve never been told these people’s stories... and I have to say I’ve never heard a story from a Nickelodeon star, personally.”

“I’ve been trying to figure out how to address it on social [media], but I have not seen the documentary and I think that’s a mistake,” she added. “I need to see the documentary. I keep meaning to, but at night when I go to bed... I’m like, ‘Ehh, “Friends.”’”

Hart told McCain that “not every egg in the Nickelodeon basket is rotten,” and said “there were some good eggs” who “really took care” of her during her teenage years as a Nickelodeon star.

“To be honest,” she said, “a few of them are still my very best friends.”

Last week, Bell slammed Nickelodeon for what he called its “empty” response to “Quiet on Set,” after the network issued a statement about its “commitment to fostering a safe and professional workplace environment.” Bell also confirmed that his 2005 song “In the End” was about the abuse he endured as a teen.

Need help? Visit RAINN’s National Sexual Assault Online Hotline or the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s website.