Kelvin Harrison Jr. and Aaron Pierre to Portray Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X in National Geographic’s “Genius: MLK/X”

Aaron Pierre and Kelvin Harrison Jr. (David Reiss and Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images/David Reiss)

The private lives and relationships of two of the most iconic civil rights leaders will be explored in the Emmy Award-winning “Genius” anthology series.

Disney+ and National Geographic announced Wednesday that Kelvin Harrison Jr. will star as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Aaron Pierre will play Malcolm X in “Genius: MLK/X,” expected to start production in Atlanta next month.

According to the logline, the anthology series “will explore the formative years, pioneering accomplishments, dueling philosophies and key personal relationships of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. While King advanced racial equality through nonviolent protest, Malcolm X argued forcefully for Black empowerment, identity and self-determination.”

Harrison, who most recently appeared as blues pioneer B.B. King in “Elvis,” received buzz earlier this year for his star turn in “Cyrano.” The New Orleans native previously starred as Fred Hampton in Aaron Sorkin’s six-time Oscar nominated historical drama “The Trial of the Chicago 7.”

Pierre had a star turn in the Prime Video series “The Underground Railroad” and M. Night Shyamalan’s “Old” last year. The London-born actor was also cast as the lead of the new “Blade” movie, which is in preproduction. Both actors will also star in “Mufasa: The Lion King” — Barry Jenkins’ live action sequel to “The Lion King,” expected to hit theaters in 2024.

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SOURCE: NY Daily News, Karu F. Daniels