Cape Town — National Geographic has announced the ensemble cast for the upcoming series Genius: Aretha.
In October Cynthia Erivo was cast as Aretha Franklin in the anthology series about the Queen of Soul.
The third season will explore Aretha'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, said the channel in a statement.
Anthony Hemingway (The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story) will serve as executive producer and direct the pilot episode of the upcoming season
Malcolm Barrett (Timeless, Preacher), joins as Ted White, Aretha's first husband and business manager.
Patrice Covington (Broadway's The Colour Purple), and Rebecca Naomi Jones (The Big Sick) will portray Erma and Carolyn Franklin, respectively, Aretha's sisters, who are both talented performers in their own right and sing backup for Aretha.
Kimberly Hébert Gregory (Vice Principals), will play Ruth Bowen, a pioneer in her field, the head of a successful black-owned agency.
Sanai Victoria (Black-ish) will play Little Re (Young Aretha) the shy, immensely talented daughter of celebrated Detroit preacher Clarence LaVaughn (C.L.) Franklin.
Filming will kick off in December and with the show set to premiere in 2020.