Library of Congress/Marion S. Trikosko

National Geographic and Disney+ have announced that the fourth installment of its Emmy-nominated series Genius will tell the story of the iconic civil-rights leaders Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X

The announcement names A Different World writer Reggie Rock Bythewood and his wife, Gina Prince-Bythewood, as the show’s executive producers, and they say in a join statement, “Malcolm and Martin are staggering icons, and we have been eager to explore the genius of these two very real men in a way that has not yet been seen. We are excited to team up with Imagine Entertainment and 20th Television to reflect their amazing lives and contributions to civil rights and the urgency of today.”

In a first for the franchise, the new season will focus on both leaders’ pioneering accomplishments, their formative years, their contributions during the civil rights era and each of their different, yet necessary, approaches to the fight for the advancement for Black people in America. 

Nat Geo premiered the series’ first installment, Genius: Einstein starring Geoffrey Rush, in 2017. That was followed by Genius: Picasso, featuring Antonio Banderas‘ portrayal of Spanish painter Pablo Picasso. The third installment, Genius: Aretha, starred Cynthia Erivo as Aretha Franklin, and its premiere was the most-watched telecast for National Geographic in two years.

The fourth installment, Genius: MLK/X, and subsequent seasons, will move from Nat Geo to the series’ new home on Disney+.

Disney is the parent company of ABC.

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