New Teaser for ‘Genius: Aretha’ Premiering March 21, on Nat Geo [Video]

The new trailer uses Erivo’s vocals to highlight some new poignant and powerful scenes showcased in the upcoming series, including the portrayal of Aretha Franklin’s iconic “Amazing Grace” performance at the New Temple Missionary Baptist Church; Franklin’s commitment to activism with friend Martin Luther King Jr.; the social injustices she faced and persevered throughout her life and career, while showing us that her voice can still bring us together as the Queen of Soul in true genius fashion.

This third season will explore Aretha Franklin’s musical genius and incomparable career, as well as the immeasurable impact and lasting influence she has had on music and culture around the world. Franklin was a gospel prodigy, an outspoken civil rights champion and widely considered the greatest singer of the past 50 years, receiving countless honors throughout her career.

The previously announced cast joining starring Cynthia Erivo as the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, and Courtney B. Vance as C.L. Franklin; Malcolm Barrett (“Timeless,” “Preacher”) as Ted White, Franklin’s first husband and business manager; David Cross (“Mr. Show,” “Arrested Development”) as legendary music producer Jerry Wexler, who guided Franklin as she developed into a confident singer and commercial success; Patrice Covington (“The Color Purple,” “Ain’t Misbehavin’”) and Rebecca Naomi Jones (“Oklahoma!” “The Big Sick”) portray Erma and Carolyn Franklin, respectively, as Aretha’s sisters and frequent background singers, who supported and collaborated with their famous sibling; Steven Norfleet (“Watchmen,” “Dynasty”) as older brother Cecil Franklin, who stepped in as Aretha’s manager following her divorce from Ted White; veteran actress Pauletta Washington (“Beloved,” “She’s Gotta Have It”) as Aretha’s nurturing and loving paternal grandmother, Rachel; Omar J. Dorsey (“Queen Sugar”) as James Cleveland; Marque Richardson (“Dear White People”) as King Curtis; Kimberly Hébert Gregory (“Vice Principals”) as Ruth Bowen; and introducing Shaian Jordan as young Aretha Franklin, aka Little Re.

The series will premiere with double-stacked episodes over four consecutive nights. Beginning Sunday, March 21, at 9/8c, with episodes available next day on Hulu.

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