02/16/2014 AT 3:20 PM ET
Acclaimed political drama House of Cards counts a huge, loyal fan base, but star Kevin Spacey gets a special thrill when it comes a particular set of die-hards: real-life Beltway insiders who’ve given the show a big thumbs-up.
“This is my favorite comment I’ve heard: ‘It’s 99 percent accurate,’ ” Spacey, 54, told PEOPLE before the season 2 premiere Thursday, held at the Directors Guild of America headquarters in Los Angeles.
Of the 1 percent who aren’t sold, Spacey said they gripe, among other things, “that you could never get an education bill passed that fast,” referring to a key plot line in season 1 of the show, whose sophomore outing debuted Friday.
“For me, I don t think of it as a series,” Spacey, who plays ruthless South Carolina congressman Frank Underwood, explained about the show. “I think of it as a really long film. It does not feel episodic because everything is connected. And even if it doesn’t seem connected to the viewer, it will be eventually.”
Among those joining the cast at the screening were Eva LaRue and Peter Fonda. The group later moved on to an after-party at the Chateau Marmont, where costar Robin Wright – who won a Golden Globe for her turn as Underwood’s steely, manipulative wife – beamed alongside her two children, Dylan and Hopper, who were her dates.
In between snapping family selfies with her kids, Wright, minus her fiancé, Ben Foster, received hugs and well-wishes, while Spacey posed for photos with the cast and crew.
Reporting by SCOTT HUVER and MELODY CHIU