LOS ANGELES: Netflix Inc indefinitely halted production of political drama “House of Cards” on Tuesday following an allegation of sexual misconduct against series star Kevin Spacey.
Producer Media Rights Capital and Netflix “have decided to suspend production on House of Cards season six, until further notice, to give us time to review the current situation and to address any concerns of our cast and crew,” a statement said.
On Sunday, “Star Trek: Discovery” actor Anthony Rapp told Buzzfeed that Spacey made an unwanted sexual advance toward him in 1986 when he was just 14 and Spacey was 26. Spacey, a two-time Oscar winner who is now 58, said he did not recall the incident. But in a tweet, he said that if he did behave as Rapp described then he apologized and it would have been due to “inappropriate drunken behaviour.”
Rapp told BuzzFeed he felt compelled to come forward after dozens of women recently accused movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and several other Hollywood figures of sexual assault and sexual harassment. Weinstein has denied having non-consensual sex with anyone.
Spacey’s apology sparked a backlash because he also used the statement to come out as a gay man. Many social media users saw it as a damaging conflation of sexual misconduct and being gay.
On Monday, Netflix and MRC called the allegation against Spacey “deeply troubling.”
“House of Cards” became Netflix’s defining show when it launched in 2013, upending traditional television viewership by making all episodes of each season available online at the same time.
Earlier on Tuesday, the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences said it was revoking a planned award for Spacey that he had been due to receive in New York on Nov. 20.