Diane Lane thinks it’s “rather strange and miraculous that season 5 ended the way it did,” not just because of what happened behind the scenes of House of Cards with Kevin Spacey’s firing, but also in regards to what’s happening in actual American politics right now.
Fans of the show already know what Lane is talking about, but for those of you who don’t, here’s a quick recap: President Claire Underwood (Robin Wright) has been sworn in following her husband Frank’s (Spacey) resignation. He attempts to control the situation behind the scenes and calls her at the White House, but Claire refuses him, turns to the camera and declares, “My turn.”
Now that Frank has been killed off and Claire is in office, the upcoming sixth and final season will see her squaring off with Lane and Greg Kinnear as the wealthy Shepherd siblings Annette and Bill.
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Diane Lane talks House of Cards season 6
“It really teed up the opportunity for [showrunners Melissa James Gibson and Frank Pugliese] to be afforded the opportunity to revisit, reexamine and rewrite the last season,” Lane tells Metro. “Because our hair was caught in the machine of the zeitgeist, and it forced the show to pause and reconvene. I think it's so lucky, what this show will wind up meaning historically.”
“I just think it's really miraculous because had it been a few months later, I don't know what would have happened. We were all on standby,” she continues. “But Netflix did the right thing by taking care of the crew and the hundreds of other employees in the meantime. I'm not 100 percent sure what some other house would have done with its people in this situation.”
While the showrunners and the writers’ attempt to cover up the Spacey-sized hole with Lane and Kinnear’s hiring, story-wise the Shepherds’ grand entrance into the plot provides ample explanation for itself. The writing should obviously be credited, but so too should the actors, and especially Lane. Whereas Kinnear’s Bill is more of an obvious patriarch who knows how to throw his weight around, Annette is as cunning and capable as Claire.
“When a family has all this money and implied power, what are they doing with it? What can they do with it? Certainly, it’s not unrealistic to think about these questions in terms of this country’s history, politically,” she says of the Shepherds. “I thought that Annette was coming to this from a perspective of comfort with her entitled experience and power. And we see it play out more and more throughout these eight episodes.”
But what drew Lane to House of Cards, specifically, and the wider world of television? Though known primarily for her many film roles, the actress has recently begun diving into TV with her House of Cards role, a part in Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner’s cinematic The Romanoffs on Amazon, and FX’s upcoming adaptation of the acclaimed graphic novel Y: The Last Man.
“I just think it's good to go where the doors are opening for you, you know?” she explains. “There is a lot more available there, as far as the writing that's of interest to me. I think it explores women's experiences and perspectives more deeply.”
House of Cards season 6 streams Friday, Nov. 2, on Netflix.