With the news coming in the wake of sexual harassment allegations against star Kevin Spacey, Netflix is actively distancing itself from actor. The global streaming site has swiftly cancelled its political drama House of Cards, where Spacey played the lead character of Frank Underwood.
On Sunday night, Buzzfeed News published an article in which actor Anthony Rapp alleged Spacey, then 26, made a sexual advance on him when he was just 14 years old. Spacey then issued a statement claiming that while he did not remember the encounter, “if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior….”
The actor went on to say that the story “has encouraged me to address other things about my life…. I have loved and had romantic encounters with men throughout my life, and I choose now to live as a gay man.”
Backlash immediately ensued, with GLADD criticizing Spacey for his decision to come about amid an accusation of sexual harassment and many people on the internet calling for Netflix to pull House of Cards.
The streamer has since announced that season six, which is currently in production, will be the show’s last. Netflix issued a joint statement with series producer Media Rights Capital in which the companies said they are “deeply troubled by last night’s news concerning Kevin Spacey. In response to last night’s revelations, executives from both of our companies arrived in Baltimore this afternoon to meet with our cast and crew to ensure that they continue to feel safe and supported. As previously scheduled, Kevin Spacey is not working on set at this time.”
Former House of Cards showrunner and creator Beau Willimon commented: “Anthony Rapp’s story is deeply troubling. During the time I worked with Kevin Spacey on House of Cards I neither witnessed nor was aware of any inappropriate behavior on set or off. That said, I take reports of such behavior seriously, and this is no exception. I feel for Mr. Rapp and I support his courage.”