HBO’s two-part, three-hour documentary Elvis Presley: The Searcher chronicles the life of one of the greatest musicians of all-time, full of never-before-seen footage and interviews. Directed by Thom Zimney, the film premieres Saturday, April 14, at 8 p.m. ET/PT.
Fortunately, even if you don’t have cable, you can still watch HBO and Elvis Presley: The Searcher on your computer, phone, or streaming device by signing up for one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services. With these services, you can either watch live HBO, or you can watch all of HBO’s on-demand content, which will include both parts of The Searcher after it airs on Saturday night.
Amazon Prime: If you have Amazon Prime or want to start a free 30-day trial of Amazon Prime, you can watch live HBO and all of HBO’s on-demand library through Amazon Channels. The HBO channel, which costs $14.99 per month, also comes with a free trial.
Once signed up for both Prime and the HBO channel, you can watch HBO and Elvis Presley: The Searcher live (you can see the days and times it’s scheduled to air here), or you can watch it on-demand after it airs. With either option, you can watch on your computer via the Amazon website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Amazon Video app.
DirecTV Now: HBO is a $5 per month add-on that can be added to any of DirecTV Now’s four channel packages. You can add it to your existing DirecTV Now account, or if you’re a new subscriber, you can sign up for a free 7-day trial of any base package plus HBO. Additionally, new subscribers can get $25 off your first three months with promo code “YESNOW3”, so if you sign up for the “Live a Little” package and HBO, you would get 60-plus channels, including HBO, for just $15 per month for the first three months.
Once signed up, you can watch HBO and Elvis Presley: The Searcher live (you can see the days and times it’s scheduled to air here), or you can watch it on-demand after it airs. You can watch on your computer via the DirecTV Now website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the DirecTV Now app. Additionally, you can also use your DirecTV Now credentials to sign in and watch via HBO Go.
Hulu: From now through the end of June, Hulu is offering a special deal that allows you to add HBO’s on-demand library to your new or existing Hulu package for just $4.99 per month. Once signed up, you can then watch Elvis Presley: The Searcher on your computer via the Hulu website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Hulu app.
Sling TV: HBO is a $15 per month add-on that can be added to either of Sling TV’s base packages. You can add it to your existing Sling TV account, or if you’re a new subscriber, you can sign up for a free 7-day trial of any package plus HBO.
Once signed up, you can watch HBO and Elvis Presley: The Searcher live (you can see the days and times it’s scheduled to air here), or you can watch it on-demand. You can watch on your computer via the Sling TV website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Sling TV app.
The documentary, which is three hours total, is split into two separate parts.
“The first part details Elvis’ early life in Tupelo, Mississippi and his unprecedented rise to fame over a single year,” according to HBO. “The second part begins with his return home after his Army discharge and facing a rapidly changing pop-music scene.”
In addition to never-before-seen photos and footage, the documentary includes interviews from musicians such as the late Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen and Emmylou Harris, among many other individuals. Also featured prominently is Elvis’ ex-wife Priscilla Presley, who worked closely with director Thom Zimny in the creation of the film and explained why she’s proud of it:
I wanted Elvis’s life to be respected because he deserved it. The questions needed to be answered. I’ve watched [the film] how many times? 10? 11? 12? I get very emotional. After living it, it’s hard for me to watch because so much went down. I needed someone who was really sensitive to that to be able to trust. And he gained my trust.
We’re very, very proud of it. After watching the film I thought, I don’t know if the fans are going to like it, because they see an idol. They know him as a movie star. The King of Rock and Roll. And now we’re exposing what went on behind the scenes. How are they going to take that? Do they want that image taken away? But then I started thinking, well, if they truly cared for Elvis Presley, truly, then they need to see what happened. If you loved him before this, you will love him even more after. Because the film humanizes him. You really get to know him.
Presley is listed as an executive producer, along with Glen Zipper, Jerry Schilling, Andrew Solt, Alan Gasmer and Jamie Salter, while the producers were Zimny, Jon Landau and Kary Anthonlis.