For heavyweight filmmaker Ron Howard, a two-hour movie chronicling the life of Albert Einstein, one of the greatest minds in history, wasn’t something that would have “served the character in the right way.” Speaking to a packed house at Deadline’s The Contenders Emmys event last month, Howard said he hoped 10 hourlong episodes of the NatGeo series Genius will give audiences a “look at the entire reach of his life.”

National Geographic/Dusan Martincek

“Most enticing was the opportunity to delve into all these aspects of Einstein that you don’t know,” Howard said to Deadline’s Mike Fleming Jr. “As a young guy he was a free thinker — very Bohemian, very romantic. He loved his music, he loved women, he loved nature.” Einstein is played by Geoffrey Rush.

Genius, an anthology series and the network’s first scripted episodic, premiered April 25 and was renewed for the second season ahead of its debut, with the new subject to be revealed during the season finale. This season follows Einstein’s humble beginnings, demonstrating the journey he would take to become one of the world’s most influential minds.

Watch the conversation above.