×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Listen: Michael Kelly, Greg Kinnear on the End of ‘House of Cards’ and Its Legacy

Welcome to “Remote Controlled,” a podcast from Variety featuring the best and brightest in television, both in front of and behind the camera.

In this week’s episode, Variety‘s chief TV critic, Daniel D’Addario, speaks with actor Michael Kelly of “House of Cards,” and senior TV reporter Daniel Holloway speaks with Kelly’s new co-star, Greg Kinnear.

Listen to this week’s podcast for free below and at Apple Podcasts:

Kelly returns as Doug Stamper in the sixth and final season of “Cards,” which arrived Nov. 2 on Netflix. He spent most of the show’s first five seasons playing against former series lead Kevin Spacey, who was written out of the show following real-life allegations of sexual misconduct.

“One of the greatest themes that I got to play this season was loss,” Kelly said. “Everything that he knew — his entire professional career — is just gone.” Kelly went into detail about the process by which the final season of the political drama, which had been scripted with Spacey’s Frank Underwood still alive, was salvaged, thanks in substantial part to the effort and leadership of Robin Wright, who plays Claire Underwood, now serving as President.

“After you try to start to process this,” Kelly says, “one of the first calls I made was to Robin and I was like, ‘What are we going to do? We can’t not do this.’ And she was like, ‘I’m already on it.'” Kelly and Wright had barely shared screen time without Spacey before this season, but now face off at length. “She’s just so good as an actor. I’ve been blessed with the people I’ve [acted with] — Rachel Brosnahan and Kevin and now Robin, to get to punch it out with those guys is incredible.”

Kelly, who will next appear on Season 2 of the Amazon action series “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan,” reflected on what the show — the first major streaming series — has meant to the world and to him. “I think to the world, unfortunately, it’s meant a little too much,” Kelly says, citing stories that Vladimir Putin had asked cronies to watch the show to understand the politics of dominance and power, American-style. “That goes too far.” But the show’s influence has also extended, more benignly, to television, and Kelly sees it as the precursor to all that followed, the entire universe of streaming TV now available. “To think that you were part of that revolution — I feel really grateful.”

With the new season, Kinnear — an Academy Award nominee and two-time Emmy nominee — and Diane Lane join the cast as Bill and Annette Shepherd, a brother and sister who are part of the behind-the-scenes Washington elite. “For me, I felt like it was an exciting opportunity to work within a great show and with great actors,” Kinnear said. “And Diane Lane was going to be my sister. That had me, too.”

Kinnear said early comparisons of the characters to the Koch brothers are apt — and that the real-life political power players were cited by showrunners Melissa James Gibson and Frank Pugliese when describing the characters to Kinnear and Lane. “They used them as an example, and I think they threw out a few other examples,” Kinnear said. “It was a good guidepost.”

New episodes of “Remote Controlled” are available every Friday. Subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, Soundcloud, or anywhere you download podcasts. You can find past episodes here and on Apple Podcasts.

Greg Kinnear photographed exclusively for the Variety Remote Controlled Podcast
Dan Doperalski for Variety

More TV

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    Showrunners, Screenwriters Back WGA in Agency Battle, Sides to Meet Again Tuesday

    More than 750 showrunners and screenwriters have backed the WGA’s battle against talent agencies taking packaging fees and other changes to the rules governing the business relationship between agents and writers. The letter of support issued Saturday is significant because of the immense clout showrunners and prominent screenwriters possess in Hollywood. Several showrunners had recently [...]

  • Norman Reedus and Ryan Hurst'The Walking

    Norman Reedus on 'The Walking Dead' Without Andrew Lincoln: 'He's With Me Every Day'

    After saying goodbye to most of the original cast on “The Walking Dead,” Norman Reedus still feels his former co-stars with him during each episode. “I’ve seen so many people come and go,” he said during a “Walking Dead” panel on Friday at PaleyFest. “Right now on the show, the ghosts of all those guys [...]

  • Series Mania: De Mensen, Reel One

    Series Mania: First Details on Co-Pro Pitching Project 'Capturing Big Mouth' (EXCLUSIVE)

    LILLE, France — Belgian production company De Mensen, which has just been acquired by France’s Newen, has teamed with Reel One Entertainment on a new cross-continental thriller series, “Capturing Big Mouth. The series will be pitched Monday at this year’s Series Mania Forum Co-pro Pitching section. It chronicles the unlikely rise and eventual fall of [...]

  • Daily Show Viacom

    Viacom, DirecTV Make Progress in Contract Talks, No Blackout After Deadline Passes

    UPDATED: Viacom and DirecTV executives went down to the wire Friday on a combative contract renewal negotiation with high stakes for both sides. The companies stayed in talks past the midnight Eastern contract expiration and the channels stayed up on AT&T’s platforms. Sources indicated early Saturday that the threat of a blackout had been averted. [...]

  • ABBY'S -- "Pilot" Episode 101 --

    TV Review: 'Abby's' Starring Natalie Morales

    “Abby’s,” NBC’s new comedy about a cranky bartender (Natalie Morales) and her inner circle of regulars, is aware of the inevitable “Cheers” comparisons. Created by “New Girl” writer Josh Malmuth and executive produced by uber-producer (and unabashed “Cheers” superfan) Mike Schur, “Abby’s” therefore makes a few key choices in order to differentiate itself as its [...]

  • Ryan Murphy Walk of Fame

    TV News Roundup: Netflix Sets Premiere Date for Ryan Murphy's 'The Politician'

    In today’s roundup, Netflix announces the premiere date for Ryan Murphy’s “The Politician” series, and Kristin Cavallari will host “Paradise Hotel” on Fox.  DATES Reality star Kristin Cavallari will host Fox’s reboot of “Paradise Hotel,” an unscripted dating show in which a group of singles will check into a tropical resort and compete to check [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content