"It wasn't the first time anyone had come to David or to me and said, 'Do you want to do television?' And I had to look at what had been happening in my own career and life, an what had been happening in the industry."
On why talent is going from film to TV: "The ground is less fertile for character-driven, storyteller-driven films that appeal to the mind and not just to the pulse. So it makes total sense to me that over the last decade we've seen some of the best writers, directors and actors moving to television, and now to streaming."
How acting in "Richard III" helped him prepare for "House of Cards": "... that experience of making an audience your co-conspirators really helped me understand how to play it in a way that I don't think I would have had otherwise."
On working with David Fincher: "It could be said that sometimes he's just trying to beat the acting out of you ... David might be just simply trying to wear them down to the point where it's just the words and what's going on emotionally, and they get rid of all the gimmicks and handles ... sometimes that's exactly what he was doing with me."
Willimon on Spacey: "David and I had decided that if we couldn't get Kevin, it wasn't a show that was appealing. You needed someone who could carry a show, someone with a natural charisma, someone who was capable of accessing an infinite number of layers. And there are only so many actors who can do those things."
Willimon: "I didn't want him to lack empathy or feeling, so from time to time we need to see his humanity bubbling forth. That's what's great about Kevin. He shows us that, and reminds us that there's an element in all of us that wishes we could disregard the rules and go after the thing we want without being bound by ethical constraints."
"At a time when we have a gridlocked government and a very entrenched congress it must be interesting for an audience to watch effectiveness, to see things move forward. I guest that means it has to be fictional, right?"