National Geographic announced Pablo Picasso will be the subject of the second season of Genius. The anthology series’ first season wrapped up on June 20, 2017 and focused on Albert Einstein, played by Geoffrey Rush as Professor Albert Einstein and Johnny Flynn as a younger Einstein. Season one snagged the highest ratings for any new National Geographic series, with more than 45 million people tuning in.
The scripted anthology series is executive produced by Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, writer Ken Biller, Francie Calfo, and Gigi Pritzker. Ken Biller is also handling showrunner duties for season two. Nat Geo will begin shooting season two this summer and is targeting a 2018 premiere.
“We are thrilled with the enthusiastic response audiences and critics have had for Genius over the last nine weeks, and are excited to be delving back in to the concept with season two,” stated CEO of National Geographic Global Networks Courteney Monroe. “More so than any of his contemporaries, Picasso’s work dramatically expressed the modern age and defined new cultural norms. We are excited to explore his life and his genius with the incredibly talented team behind the series.”
“The remarkable story of artistic visionary Pablo Picasso is the perfect subject for season two of Genius,” said executive producer Ron Howard. “Picasso was a trailblazer who left a profound artistic and cultural impact on the world and we look forward to continuing our successful partnership with National Geographic and Fox 21 Television Studios in telling the untold story behind the brilliant individual.”
“Season one has been a fantastic experience for all of us, and we owe a big debt to Courteney, Carolyn and the Nat Geo team for being such great partners,” commented Bert Salke, president of Fox 21 Television Studios. “Picasso is arguably one of the most influential artists of the last century with a life story almost too fantastic to be reality. It’s the perfect next chapter for Ron, Brian, Ken and this franchise.”
Details on Pablo Picasso’s Career, Courtesy of National Geographic: The artistic career of Pablo Diego Jose Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno Maria de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santisima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso spanned more than 80 of his 91 years, much of it in his second home of France. Much like the subject of the first season of GENIUS, Albert Einstein, Picasso imagined and interpreted the world in totally new and unorthodox ways, and constantly reinvented our perceptions of art and creativity. The prolific artist generated more than 50,000 works, among the most notable being The Old Guitarist from his Blue Period, now on display at the Art Institute of Chicago; Guernica, inspired by the Nazi bombing of a small Spanish town of the same name, currently on display at the Museo Reina Sofia in Madrid, Spain; and Les Demoiselles D’Avignon, inspired by lover and muse Fernande Olivier, now on display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.
His passionate nature and relentless creative drive were inextricably linked to his personal life, which included tumultuous marriages, numerous affairs and constantly shifting political and personal alliances. He lived most of his life in the vibrant Paris of the first half of the 20th Century and crossed paths with writers and artists including Ernest Hemingway, Coco Chanel, Henri Matisse, Marc Chagall, Gertrude Stein, Georges Braque, and Jean Cocteau. Picasso constantly reinvented himself, always striving to innovate and push the boundaries of artistic expression.