National Geographic Channel is making a smart move: It’s renewing the biopic anthology Genius for a second season.
The network announced the renewal at its upfront presentation on Wednesday, a week ahead of Genius‘ April 25 series premiere. The first season tells the story of legendary physicist Albert Einstein, with Oscar winner Geoffrey Rush and Johnny Flynn playing Einstein at two different ages; Ron Howard and Brian Grazer serve as executive producers.
Each season focuses on a different historical figure who changed the world with their brainpower, but the identity of Season 2’s subject won’t be revealed until the Season 1 finale on June 20.
Nat Geo also announced Race, a new six-episode docuseries from executive producer Jay Z that will explore the legacy of racial injustice in America with a combination of documentary, animation and archival footage.
More new Nat Geo series announced at Wednesday’s upfront presentation:
* An untitled documentary series from Katie Couric, set to debut in 2018, with the newswoman talking with global leaders “who are shaping the most pivotal, contentious and oftentimes confusing topics across the globe today.”
* The Birth of the Pill, a scripted account of the battle to make birth control available to women everywhere.
* The Hot Zone, based on the bestselling book about a viral outbreak in the Washington D.C. suburbs.
* An untitled series about the origins of National Geographic’s first TV documentaries.
Also, the network announced that veteran producer Dee Johnson (ER, The Good Wife, Nashville) will take over as showrunner for Season 2 of its scripted drama Mars.