In what appears to be an impressive piece of corporate spin, Netflix announced Monday that it was cancelling House of Cards, the series starring Kevin Spacey, the two-time Oscar winner who is facing numerous allegations of sexual misconduct, including with a 14 year-old boy some 30 years ago.
The announcement makes it appear as though Netflix is pro-actively severing ties with the embattled Spacey, who has not denied he made an aggressive sexual advance on a 14 year-old Anthony Rapp.
A deeper look at the Netflix announcement actually reveals that this “cancellation announcement” might be the streaming company’s way of distracting its customers from the news that it is has decided to continue working with Spacey.
To begin with, according to TVLine, a Netflix representative confirmed to them that “the decision to bring HoC to an end was made months ago and was not in response to the allegations.”
TVLine further reports that production of season six “began earlier this month[.]” Production is generally the term used for the filming, which is also the most expensive part. At this point, there are probably no more than three of the 13 expected episodes in the can.
Moreover, Netflix is so far away from completing season six, it will reportedly not be released until the middle of next year.
While there is no question Netflix has millions of dollars already invested in season six, it would not be unprecedented for the company to take a big loss and immediately cut ties with the actor. Just weeks away from releasing a project with Bill Cosby, Netflix yanked what was probably a completed project, not one merely in production.
Netflix just released a statement claiming it is “deeply troubled” by the allegations.
Media Rights Capital and Netflix 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.
However, Netflix did not comment on the additional allegations.
Just ten days ago, news broke that Netflix settled a sexual harassment claim with a male employee.
No word yet on Spacey’s other Netflix project, a biopic about Gore Vidal titled Gore.