When thinking about "Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide," James K. Polk's unofficial on-campus lawyer Claire Sawyer comes to mind. Whenever an issue between students and/or faculty occurred, Claire would randomly come out of nowhere and agree to take their case.
The running gag was she would always introduce herself as "Claire Sawyer, Future Lawyer," to which Ned Bigby (Devon Werkheiser) and his friends would reply, "Claire, we've known you since pre-k."
The show ended eight years ago, but people are still wondering what became of Claire Sawyer — and if she pursued her dream of becoming a lawyer. So MTV News spoke with actress Brooke M. Bridges about what she's been up to since "Ned's Declassified," behind-the-scenes secrets about the show and finally found out if she actually pursued a career in law.
Sorry, everyone. Bridges didn't become a lawyer.
"I did take a few law classes in college though and loved it, but decided the long schooling and thousands of dollars worth of school loans just wasn't the path for me."
But, her time as Claire actually DID end up helping her out.
"I actually won a case representing myself thanks to those law classes against an ex employer for trying to screw me over and not pay me overtime. I guess I gained a little inspiration from Claire!"
Bridges has a pretty strong guess about if Claire Sawyer is now Claire Sawyer,
"I think she probably did [become a lawyer]. She was pretty dedicated. I would say she’d study criminal law because she did deal with conflict well. She probably went to Yale because that’s the best law school in America and she only wanted the best!"
Bridges wasn't originally cast as "Claire Sawyer, Future Lawyer."
"My 'Ned’s Declassified' audition ended up being multiple auditions. Initially, Nickelodeon booked someone else and she shot the pilot. I guess they didn't want her for the actual show, so they brought me back in for a table read with the other cast members and then I ended up booking it! I was really surprised because I had a third callback for the show months and months before they booked me since the other girl shot the pilot. I just took over for her once the show got picked up and kept going from there!"
She was BFFs with Lisa Zemo and Backpack Boy.
"I was definitely closest to Rachel Sibner who played Lisa Zemo, I even went to her Bat Mitzvah! Kendre Berry was also a good friend of mine who played Backpack Boy. We all got along really well which is something that made me really happy. I actually cried when they wrapped me for the last season I was on. It was really sad because I felt like we really did become a family!"
Bridges has unfortunately lost touch with the cast since the show ended.
"I chat with Devon [Werkheiser] and Rob [Pinkston] from time to time through social media, but I don't really keep in touch with anyone. Rachel Sibner (Lisa Zemo) and I stayed in touch for awhile, but then we lost touch! I’ll definitely reach out to them now!"
Tips from the show actually did help her out!
"Most of the tips came in handy and probably still will for a lot of kids. The writers always tried to come up with tips that actually made sense for middle school kids, and most of them did! Some of them were silly to fit the episode, but some were really deep and can really help young kids get through school.
A lot of them just teach you how to “human” a little better, because honestly I feel like middle school is the most awkward stage of our lives. That’s probably why they ship all of us off to a school by ourselves. We all need a little help during puberty, growth spurts, first crushes…we literally all know how hard it is!"
Her favorite episode was definitely "Talent Show."
"[My favorite episode is] 100% the talent show episode where I had to climb out of Backpack Boy’s backpack and say, “I’m gonna sue the backpack off of that boy!” because apparently he stuffed me in there against my will.
She learned she was allergic to huskies the hard way — on set.
"[I liked] the School Dances episode where they brought in a husky that played a wolf. I realized on that day I was allergic to huskies and ended up with a big rash across my chest. Good times."
Her favorite guest star to work with on the show? Corbin Bleu, of course.
"Corbin Bleu was definitely my favorite because I worked with his sister on a Frosted Flakes commercial YEARS ago when I was about 7. I already knew him and his family and we got to catch up. He’s such a nice guy, and it wasn't too bad that he had a crush on me either!"
Fun fact: Gordy had a strong connection to another Nickelodeon show.
"Daran Norris, the actor that plays Gordy, was the voice of Cosmo and the Dad on "The Fairly OddParents." Also, most of us were much older than the roles we were playing, and a lot of the background people were in their 30’s playing middle school aged kids! Also, half of the time the weasel was fake. Occasionally we did get the little guy in there to film, but only for his close ups!"
Today, Bridges is still acting, but she's also a blogger and photographer.
"After "Ned’s," I went on to work on "LAX" on NBC with Blair Underwood and Heather Locklear playing Blair’s daughter, and I’ve had small appearances on shows like "90210" and "Switched at Birth." I am still acting, but mostly commercial at the moment. I recently booked an Applebee’s and a Toyota, so keep an eye out!
Right now I’m actually a food blogger and photographer for my blog The Babbling Brooke! You should definitely check it out if you like food. I mean, we all eat…so I’m sure you will like it! I’m on Instagram too with a ton of awesome food pics. And everyone loves food porn... I definitely still love acting, but cooking and photography are really my dream; plus I would love to combine all three passions and end up with my own food network show in the future!"