It’s perfect timing for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. National Geographic has released the new trailer for their upcoming “Genius” anthology series this holiday and holiday weekend. The latest story in this franchise is “Genius: MLK/X,” which centers obviously on seminal and iconic civil rights era geniuses Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.
The series features two up-and-coming but soon-to-be heavyweight actors in the lead roles: Kelvin Harrison Jr. (known for “Waves,” “Chevalier,” and “Monster”) as MLK Jr. and Aaron Pierre as Malcolm X. Pierre isn’t as arguably well-known, but he’s about to break out in a big way soon. Having already starred in Barry Jenkins’ “The Underground Railroad,” his upcoming roles include a role in Marvel’s “Blade,” the lead in Jeremy Saulnier’s “Rebel Ridge,” and Jenkins’ upcoming “Mufasa: The Lion King.”
“Genius: MLK/X” will premiere the first two episodes on February 1 on National Geographic and stream the next day on Disney+ and Hulu, with two new episodes debuting weekly on all platforms.
An eight-part series focuses on the dueling philosophies that MLK and Malcolm X helped usher America through the Civil Rights Movement.
Here’s the official synopsis:
Genius: MLK/X follows both King and X from their formative years, where they were molded by strong fathers and traumatic injustices, to their rich, parallel stories as they shaped their identities and became the change they wished to see in the world. Influenced as children by different upbringings and experiences: King by the Jim Crow-era South and life in the church before finding his voice at Morehouse and Boston University, and X growing up under the constant, deadly violence of the Klan and falling into a life of vice and incarceration where he was introduced to the Nation of Islam and found his voice. The two visionaries ultimately rose to pioneer a movement.
The ensemble cast also features Weruche Opia (“I May Destroy You”) as Coretta Scott King and Jayme Lawson (The Batman) as Betty Shabazz. The series also marks one of the last roles for Emmy-winning actor Ron Cephas Jones (“This is Us”).
“Genius: MLK/X” premieres February 1 on National Geographic. Watch the first trailer below.