Daniella Monet claims Nickelodeon bosses refused to cut a scene from ‘Victorious’ because she felt too “sexualised”.
The 33-year-old star played aspiring singer and actor Trina Vega on the children’s show, which ran from 2010 to 2013 and also featured Ariana Grande and Victoria Justice, while led by TV producer and former Nickelodeon collaborator, Dan Schneider.
Dan’s creations have been in the spotlight following the release of actress Jennette McCurdy’s memoir, ‘I’m Glad my Mom Died’, in which she detailed her experiences as a child actress for Nickelodeon.
Her claims have prompted others to come forward about alleged exploitation and other controversies, while earlier this month fans claimed Ariana, 29, was “infantilised and sexualised” in scenes from Schneider’s ‘Sam and Cat’ show.
Now, Daniella has spoken about her experience on ‘Victorious’ as part of a longer investigation by Insider into Dan’s work.
The piece said Daniella recalled filming a scene in which her character ate a pickle while applying lip gloss, which the actress feared was overly sexualised, leading her to air her concerns with the network.
But the scene was broadcast as planned, and even though Daniella admitted most of ‘Victorious’ was “very PC, funny, silly, friendly, chill”, she said occasionally the “male-dominated writers’ room” could result in some “hyper-sexualised scenes”.
She added: “Do I wish certain things, like, didn’t have to be so sexualised? Yeah. A hundred per cent.”
Daniella also claimed “none of Schneider’s shows credited more than two female writers in the entirety of their runs”.
Actress Alexa Nikolas, 30, who starred in the first two seasons of ‘Zoey 101’ as Nicole Bristow, last week protested outside of Nickelodeon’s Burbank offices with her ‘Eat Predators’ group.
It came after she spoke about her “traumatising” experience working with the network, alleging to Insider Schneider, 56, once “screamed at her until she broke down in tears”, and claimed the producer would “often take photos with teenage actresses sitting on his lap”.
Russell Hicks, Nickelodeon’s former president of content development and production, told Insider the network’s standards and practices department read all the scripts for Schneider’s shows and parents or guardians were always present on set.
He said: “Every single thing that Dan ever did on any of his shows was carefully scrutinised and approved.”
Dan told the New York Times in July he left the network after an “exhausting” period of work and dismissed speculation his children’s shows were sexualised as “ridiculous”.
He also denied any attempts at sexualising his young actors, saying: “The comedy was totally innocent.”