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Robin Wright replaces Kevin Spacey as House of Cards lead

Following allegations against Spacey, Claire Underwood will take centre stage in the final season

On Monday, Netflix announced that the sixth and final season of House of Cards would go ahead with Robin Wright replacing Kevin Spacey in the lead role. Following accusations of sexual assault against Spacey, the studio behind House of Cards suspended the actor, while Netflix cut all ties with him in November.

The sixth season, which will be shorter than previous seasons at eight episodes, will feature Spacey’s character Frank Underwood’s wife Claire (Robin Wright) as the main character, with Netflix’s chief content officer saying that they are “really excited about bringing closure to the fans”, adding, “we’re excited for the 370 people who make House of Cards and have done the best work of their lives on that show; for the 2,000 people in Baltimore who have come to depend on that show for their jobs. And so we’re really excited that we were able to come to a good creative conclusion to the show”.

Netflix had already made the decision to end the show at six seasons prior to the accusations. At the end of the fifth season, Claire became president after Frank resigned in disgrace, so the transition into Spacey’s absence should be pretty straightforward.

In late October, amid a slew of accusations against powerful figures in Hollywood and other industries, Star Trek actor Anthony Rapp told BuzzFeed that Spacey had made sexual advances against him when he was just 14. The accusation was followed by dozens more, some as recently as 2016.