'House of Cards' production halted following allegation

Production on the sixth and final season of "House of Cards" has been halted after star Kevin Spacey was accused of sexual assault by an actor who claims he was a minor at the time of the alleged incident.

Netflix and Media Rights Capital, which produces the series, confirmed the move in a joint statement issued Tuesday.

"MRC 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," the statement read.

On Sunday, actor Anthony Rapp told BuzzFeed about an alleged encounter with Spacey at a party in 1986. At the time, Rapp was 14 years old and Spacey, according to Rapp, made a sexual advance toward him.

Spacey issued a statement late Sunday, claiming he did not recall the incident but apologized for what he said would have been "inappropriate drunken behavior."

"But if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior, and I am sorry for the feelings he describes having carried with him all these years," Spacey said.

Netflix announced on Monday that Season 6 of "House of Cards" would be the show's last.

The decision to end the series, according to multiple sources close to production, was made months prior to the allegation against Spacey.

Production on Season 6 had been taking place in the Baltimore area for about two weeks, a spokesperson for the Maryland Department of Commerce told CNN.

On Monday, Netflix and MRC said they were "deeply troubled " by the allegation against Spacey, and said representatives from both companies had been sent to set to ensure the cast and crew "feel safe and supported."

Spacey had not previously been scheduled to work on set on Monday, according to a statement from the companies.

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How will Hollywood react?

The allegation against Spacey comes as the entertainment industry is reeling from a series of sexual misconduct accusations made against powerful players in the business.

The allegations made against movie executive Harvey Weinstein in stories by The New York Times and The New Yorker are seen as a turning point. Many long-silent victims of sexual assault and harassment have shared their accounts since.

To date, more than 60 women have accused Weinstein of sexual assault or harassment

A spokeswoman for Weinstein has repeatedly denied allegations "of non-consensual sex." Weinstein has also apologized for "the way I've behaved with colleagues in the past."

Nearly one month since allegations against Weinstein first surfaced, the fallout continues.

On Monday, the Producers Guild of America announced Weinstein would be banned for life from the organization. This follows a series of similar moves by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and BAFTA, who have sought to distance themselves from the disgraced film mogul.

The TV Academy is also reviewing his membership.

Exactly how Hollywood organizations will react to the allegations against Spacey remains unclear.

When reached by CNN, a spokesperson for the SAG-AFTRA, a labor union which represents actors and performers, would not comment on Spacey, an 11-time SAG Award nominee and four-time recipient.

"For general guidance, we take our members' privacy very seriously and our policies don't permit any disclosure of information regarding who is or is not a member, or information about an individual's activity with the organization," the spokesperson said. "We don't comment on the internal and confidential member disciplinary process.​"

Other organizations were swifter to distance themselves from the actor.

On Monday, the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences reversed its earlier decision to honor Spacey with the 2017 International Emmy Founders Award, citing "recent events."

London'd Old Vic Theatre, where Spacey was artistic director for 11 years, also took a strong stance in a statement issued Tuesday.

"If you have been connected with The Old Vic or in our employment and feel you have a complaint that you were unable to raise, please contact us," the statement said.

The theater has appointed external advisers "to help us deal with any information received."


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