Atkinson broke into television with appearances in made-for-TV movies and in the network series "A Year in the Life" (1987-88). While peppering her résumé with gigs on shows such as "Parenthood" and "The X-Files," Atkinson moved into feature films, including Free Willy (1993) and Blank Check (1994), later counting the politically charged thriller Syriana (2005) among her big-screen credits.
In 2006, Atkinson landed the role for which she's best known: Homeland Security official Karen Hayes on the megahit "24." The actress' subsequent works include Recount (2008) and the Netflix original series "House of Cards."
Ruthless politician Francis Underwood and his ambitious wife Claire will stop at nothing to conquer Washington D.C. in this dark political drama, winner of four Emmy Awards, including Best Director, and two Golden Globes for Best Actor and Best Actress.