11:15 am EST, February 21, 2014

Kate Mara explains how she kept her big ‘House of Cards’ secret for so long

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One question viewers had after watching House of Cards season 2’s premiere episode was: How did they keep the secret?

TV Line spoke to actress Kate Mara, whose character shockingly dies during episode 1 titled “Chapter 14.” The big spoiler was never leaked in advance of the show’s February 14 premiere on Netflix.

Mara says she had to lie to her friends to keep the secret safe. “My friends and people I work with, as a polite conversation starter, they will say, ‘How’s it going in Baltimore? How much longer do you have? Are you on a break right now?’ I had to just lie about it and say, ‘Yeah, I’ve got a few days off,’ or ‘The season’s going really well…’ I tried not to say too much because I didn’t feel like making up an elaborate story about shooting the show when I hadn’t been on the set in six months.”

Related: House of Cards season 2 premiere episode shocks viewers

The actress adds she was prepared to pretend she was on set longer than she really was thanks to a series of photos she took in her short time on set. “I took a bunch of random pictures on the set in the two weeks that it took me to shoot my final episode and then throughout the months when I wasn’t shooting we’d tweet a picture as if I was on set and I really wasn’t. [Laughs] Very Zoe Barnes.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Mara added that she finds herself “rooting for Frank” despite his bad behavior and that she will always be careful when standing next to a subway track. “I always stand far away from it, and now I will continue to do so. But I will definitely be thinking of House of Cards and Zoe when I’m in the subway,” she said.

Netflix released all 13 episodes of House of Cards season 2 on February 14.

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