Kevin Spacey’s baggage isn’t going to kill “House of Cards” just yet.
Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said at a conference in New York on Monday that filming for season six of “House of Cards” will resume in early 2018, Variety reports. The abbreviated eight-episode season won’t include Spacey as Frank Underwood, meaning Claire, played by Robin Wright, will be getting the spotlight.
“We were really excited we could get to an agreement” to finish out the show, Sarandos said.
The streaming service and entertainment company abruptly suspended production in October following numerous allegations that Spacey, its star actor, had sexually assaulted and harassed victims. “House of Cards” is filmed in Harford County and Baltimore.
Spacey, fired by Netflix last month, has been accused of attempting to rape a pupil actor as a teenager, making a coercive sexual advance towards actor Anthony Rapp at a party — when he was also 14 — and of sexually assaulting or harassing crew members and production assistants on sets in and around Joppa.
Spacey issued an apology to Rapp via Twitter, calling the allegation “deeply inappropriate drunken behavior” that he didn’t remember. He’s since checked himself into a rehabilitation program in Arizona for sex addicts.
What’s remained unclear in the aftermath is whether the suspension equated to a deathblow for the show. Netflix execs said “House of Cards” was already filming its final season when they suspended production. The show’s writers have reportedly been debating how to cut him out of the plot, possibly by killing him off.
Maryland has benefitted tremendously from Netflix picking the Baltimore area as its working set. To put it into numbers, the Department of Commerce calculated the first four seasons of the show had an economic impact of more than $460 million, and that Netflix hired an average of 2,154 residents each season and rented or bought goods and services from an average of 2,228 businesses each season.
Variety reports the Netflix employees and hired crew are being paid while the show remains on hiatus, which was extended through Dec. 8 last week and is now stretching into at least January.
For viewers worried about a dud of a finale for the Underwood saga, relax. Sarandos said today that the ending should bring “closure of the show for fans.”
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