Jennette McCurdy did not want to be part of the entertainment industry, that was always her mother Debra’s dream. But the former Nickelodeon star not only has a lot to say about her turbulent relationship with her mother, but also about her experience working for producer Dan Schneider.
Vanity Fair published an excerpt from McCurdy’s memoir entitled I’m Glad My Mom Died (I’m glad my mom died). Here the retired actress, best remembered for his role as Sam Puckett in icarlyclaims the network offered her $300,000 to keep quiet about inappropriate behavior by a man she refers to simply as “The Creator.”
His account of the events begins during a private dinner before the launch of Sam & Catthe spinoff which he co-starred with Ariana Grande. McCurdy writes that ‘The Creator’ offered her her first drink of alcohol even though she was barely 18 years old. It is worth remembering that the minimum legal age to consume alcoholic beverages is 21 years in the United States. She reluctantly agreed.
“’The Creator’ laughs. I did it well. I have pleased him. Mission accomplished. It’s the same mission I have every time I have dinner with him, which has become more and more frequent lately as my new contract for the spinoff that he promised me,” recalls McCurdy. “’The Creator’ is doing what I’ve heard from my co-stars, what he does with every new star of a series he’s producing: he takes you under his wing. You are his favourite.”
At that same dinner, ‘The Creator’ stripped off his coat and put it on Jennette, before beginning to give her an unsolicited massage. “My shoulders have many knots, but I don’t want the Creator to undo them. I want to say something, tell him to stop, but I am so afraid of offending him,” she recounts.
The fragment advances a year to the last days of Sam & Cat. Jennette McCurdy opens up about her struggles with bulimia, alcoholism and depression. At this point, the Californian actress also says that the chain had already prohibited the “Creator” from interacting with the actors after allegations of abuse on the sets.
The next morning, McCurdy received a call from his team of agents and attorneys informing him of the show’s cancellation. A news that he received with enthusiasm since he was already beginning to question his future away from acting.
However, the network was also offering him a “parting gift”: $300,000. The only condition was that he never speak publicly about his experience at Nickelodeon, specifically, with ‘The Creator’. McCurdy refused what he immediately recognized as “hush money” from him.
“What the hell? Is Nickelodeon offering me $300,000 not to speak publicly about my experience on the show? My personal experience of abuse with ‘The Creator’? This is a network with programming made for children. Shouldn’t they have some sort of moral compass? Shouldn’t they at least try to have some sort of ethical standard?” she muses.
The chapter closes with her joking that maybe she should have accepted them because, although she made a decent sum of money for her time at Nickelodeon, it wasn’t enough that those $300,000 didn’t make a difference.
I’m Glad My Mom Died will be officially released on August 9. You can read the full excerpt HERE.
Jennette McCurdy’s entry Reveals Nickelodeon Offered Her a Fortune to Shut Up Abuse was first published in Cinema PREMIERE.