GAFFNEY, SC (FOX 46 WJZY/AP) - A tombstone has been set up in Gaffney, SC for House of Cards character Frank Underwood after he was killed off of the popular Netflix series following allegations of sexual misconduct against actor Kevin Spacey.
According to the Gaffney Visitors Center and Art Gallery, a photographer from Netflix was at the grave site on Saturday, Nov. 3, to capture images paying respects to the fictional 46th President of the United States. The public was invited to visit the Oakland Cemetery and send their photos to Netflix.
The show has decided to continue without lead actor Kevin Spacy after the Me Too-triggered firing of star. At least 24 men have accused Spacey, a two-time Oscar winner and a five-time Emmy nominee for his portrayal of Francis Underwood, of sexual misconduct or assault.
In response to the first claim, from an actor who alleged that Spacey made inappropriate advances toward him when he was 14, Spacey said he didn’t recall the alleged encounter but said it would have been “deeply inappropriate drunken behavior.”
“Ultimately, the only response that we could have was the one that we had,” said executive producer Frank Pugliese. “Which is the cast and crew and everyone involved decided to put their heads down and respond by telling the best story that we possibly could. It was the only way that we could answer anything, any circumstance.”
When Netflix and the studio OK’d the show’s resumption without him, it avoided an unresolved end for the drama that put Netflix on the map as a destination for original fare. “House of Cards” also heralded the rise of streaming platforms and more such acclaimed shows, including Netflix’s “Orange Is the New Black” and Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
That Francis would be gone but not forgotten was inevitable, said Pugliese: “To deny the weight or the importance of Francis Underwood, you can’t do it so easily. It was such a big part of the story for so many seasons, and at the core of whatever Claire is going through and whatever the series is about.”
The spirit of Frank and his misdeeds past haunt the sixth season of “House of Cards” and its new U.S. president, the widowed Claire Underwood.
Francis is very much dead when the Netflix series opens its final, eight-episode run Friday, as an image of Claire, portrayed by actress Robin Wright, bending tenderly over his coffin makes clear. Wright, now flying solo, says it required a group effort to rebound after losing Spacey and his character.
“We all really collaborated well and wanted the best for the show. So I think it was a reunion of, ‘Come on, let’s pull up our bootstraps and forge ahead,’” said Wright, who declined to comment on whether Spacey was missed on set (Wright has also received five Emmy nominations for her work on the show).