America has yet to have a female president, but movies and television have at least somewhat picked up where reality has failed. There have been a number of women presidents on the big and small screen, starting with Polly Bergen in the 1964 comedy Kiss for My President and continuing with Geena Davis on Commander in Chief, Charlize Theron in Long Shot, and, of course, Julia Louis-Dreyfus on Veep. (And then there’s the Simpsons episode from the year 2000 in which Lisa was Donald Trump’s successor.) Of course, there’s also Robin Wright’s Claire Underwood on House of Cards, who in the final season took over for her husband Frank after he resigned in disgrace (i.e., after Kevin Spacey did the same).
It’s an honor, of course, even if the position is fictitious. But in a new interview with PeopleTV (in a bit teased out by Entertainment Weekly), the actress says she has one carp with how Claire got the job. “I did wish that she had been nominated as president legitimately,” Wright said. “That would have been a nice little caveat to put out in the world to say, ‘See? It’s possible.’”
That said, Wright has few other complaints. She got to direct some of its final episodes, and she got to watch as the character deepen over the Netflix show’s six seasons. In fact, she remembered being reluctant to take the role initially, worrying that Claire was just a wife.
“I don’t want to just play a woman who’s arm candy to a politician in a TV show,” she said about the role. Luckily executive producer David Fincher, who also directed the pilot, eased her concerns. “And he said, ‘Don’t worry. It’s only the beginning, season 1. Claire Underwood is going to evolve into a very complex — if we want to say complex — and corrupt female character.’”