National Geographic and Fox 21 Television Studios will release a first-look, national teaser promo for GENIUS: ARETHA during this TONIGHT’s Oscars® telecast airing on ABC. Cynthia Erivo, a 2020 Academy Award® nominee, stars as Aretha Franklin in the third season of the critically acclaimed global anthology series.
Set to perform “Stand Up” live during Hollywood’s biggest night, Erivo is nominated in two categories: Actress in a Leading Role and Music (Original Song) for the film “Harriet.”
GENIUS: ARETHA will premiere over four consecutive nights, beginning Memorial Day, Monday, May 25, at 9/8c. GENIUS: ARETHA will be the first-ever, definitive and only authorized scripted limited series on the life of Aretha Franklin. The eight-part series will explore Franklin’s musical genius and incomparable career – and the immeasurable impact and lasting influence she has had on music and culture around the world. GENIUS: ARETHA will broadcast in 172 countries and in 43 languages on National Geographic Channels.
The cast includes Cynthia Erivo (“Harriet,” Broadway’s “The Color Purple”) as Aretha Franklin; Courtney B. Vance (“The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story”) as C.L. Franklin; David Cross (“Goliath,” “Arrested Development”) as Jerry Wexler; Malcolm Barrett (“Timeless,” “Preacher”) as Ted White; Pauletta Washington (“She’s Gotta Have It”) as Grandmother Rachel; Patrice Covington (Broadway’s “The Color Purple”) as Erma Franklin; Rebecca Naomi Jones (“The Big Sick”) as Carolyn Franklin; Steven Norfleet(“Watchmen”) as Cecil Franklin; Kimberly Hébert Gregory (“Vice Principals”) as Ruth Bowen; Omar J. Dorsey (“Queen Sugar”) as James Cleveland; Marque Richardson (“Dear White People”) as King Curtis; and introducing Shaian Jordan as Little Re.