Here’s How to Watch ‘The Staircase’ For Free to See Colin Firth in This Shocking True Crime Story

Colin Firth, 'The Staircase' on HBO Max
Photo: Courtesy of HBO Max.

True-crime fans are probably going to want to know how to watch The StaircaseHBO Max’s riveting new miniseries which depicts the shocking story of Michael and Kathleen Peterson. Luckily, we have tips for how to stream the new show below—including ways to watch The Staircase online for free.

The Staircase, which is based on the 2004 docuseries of the same name by Jean-Xavier de Lestrade, is an HBO Max miniseries created and written by Antonio Campos and Maggie Cohn. The series stars Colin Firth as Michael Peterson, a novelist who is accused of murdering his wife Kathleen Peterson, who is played by Toni Collette, after she is found dead at the bottom of the staircase in their North Carolina family home. HBO’s reimagination of the Peterson saga is set across 16 years, spanning from the initial allegations and trial, to the final verdict in this suspicious case.

For everything there is to know about The Staircase—from the real-life case, to tips on how to watch The Staircase online for free now that it’s on HBO Max—just keep on reading below!

Is The Staircase based on a true story?

Before streaming the HBO Max series, audiences may be wondering if The Staircase is based on a true story—and the answer is yes. The miniseries follows the events of the Peterson murder trial, in which writer Michael Peterson was accused of murdering his second wife, Kathleen Peterson after his wife was found dead at the bottom of their staircase. While Michael insisted that his wife fell down the stairs, investigators would eventually find that her injuries were consistent with that of someone who had been beaten to death, sparking speculation over Peterson’s involvement in her death.

When does The Staircase come out?

The first three episodes of The Staircase premiered on May 5, 2022, on HBO Max, with new episodes landing on the streamer on Thursday nights.

How to watch The Staircase online

The Staircase, HBO Max Cast

Courtesy of HBO Max.

The Staircase is available to stream on HBO Max, which offers two plans: a $9.99 per month ad-supported plan and a $14.99 per month ad-free plan. Both plans also offer yearly subscriptions. The ad-supported plan offers a $99.99 per year subscription (which saves users about $20 from the monthly price) and the ad-free plan offers a $149.99 per year subscription (which saves users about $30 from the monthly price.) HBO Max’s ad-free plan is also available on Hulu for $14.99 per month.

Hulu’s cost starts at $6.99 per month or $69.99 per year (which saves users about $14) for its ad-supported plan. Hulu’s no-ads plan costs $12.99 per month. Hulu also offers a student discount for $1.99 per month fo its ad-supported plan (which saves users $5 per month or $60 per year.) Users can also subscribe to The Disney Bundle, which includes Hulu’s ad-supported plan, Disney+ and ESPN+ for $13.99 per month. The bundle saves users about $8 per month from subscribing to each service individually. Along with HBO Max, Hulu subscribers can also add on premium subscriptions to Cinemax ($9.99 per month), Showtime ($10.99 per month) and Starz ($8.99 per month.)

How to watch The Staircase online for free

Colin Firth, Toni Collette, The Staircase

Courtesy of HBO Max.

So how can one watch The Staircase online for free? Keep on reading ahead for our tips and tricks to stream The Staircase at no cost to see HBO Max’s series featuring Colin Firth and Toni Collette, among others.

Watch The Staircase With Hulu’s HBO Max Free Trial

While HBO Max doesn’t have a free trial, customers can still try out the service for free via Hulu’s HBO Max free trial. The service allows users to try both Hulu and HBO Max for free for seven days, which is enough time to test out the site before subscribing. Just be sure to set a reminder to cancel your subscription before you’re charged. After the trial ends, the service will cost $14.99 to add HBO Max to one’s Hulu account.

Watch The Staircase With AT&T’s Free HBO Max Subscription

If you’re an AT&T customer (or know someone who is), you may be eligible for a free HBO Max subscription. The first step is to check if your AT&T plans includes a free HBO Max subscription. Eligible plans include: AT&T Unlimited Elite, AT&T Unlimited Plus, AT&T Unlimited Plus Enhanced, AT&T Unlimited Choice, AT&T Unlimited Choice II, AT&T Unlimited Choice Enhanced and AT&T Unlimited & More Premium. If you have one of these plans, you’re eligible for a complimentary HBO Max account. There are FAQs with instructions on how to claim your free HBO Max subscription here and here.

When are new The Staircase episodes released?

New episodes of The Staircase are released on Thursdays at 12:01 a.m. PT / 3:01 a.m. ET on HBO Max.

How many episodes is The Staircase?

There are eight episodes of The Staircase.

Who’s in The Staircase cast?

The Staircase cast features Colin Firth and Toni Collette as Michael and Kathleen Peterson, respectively. The HBO series also stars Game of Thrones’ Sophie Turner, along with actor and model Patrick Schwarzenegger, among others. Check out the full cast of The Staircase below.

  • Colin Firth as Michael Peterson
  • Toni Collette as Kathleen Peterson
  • Rosemarie DeWitt as Candace Hunt Zamperini
  • Juliette Binoche as Sophie Brunet
  • Parker Posey as Freda Black
  • Sophie Turner as Margaret Ratliff
  • Odessa Young as Martha Ratliff
  • Patrick Schwarzenegger as Todd Peterson
  • Dane DeHaan as Clayton Peterson
  • Olivia DeJonge as Caitlin Atwater
  • Michael Stuhlbarg as David Rudolf
  • Tim Guinee as Bill Peterson
  • Vincent Vermignon as Jean-Xavier
  • Hannah Pniewski as Becky
  • Kevin Sizemore as Mark Zamperini
  • Robert Crayton as Ron Guerette
  • Any Serkis as The Owl
  • Cory Scott Allen as Art Holland
  • Justice Leak as Tom Maher
  • Ryan Lewis as Bruce Campbell
  • Joel McKinnon Miller as Larry Pollard
  • Trini Alvarado as Patricia Sue Peterson
  • Cullen Moss as Jim Hardin
  • Daniela Lee as Devon
  • Teri Wyble as Sonya Pfeiffer
  • Susan Pourfar as Dr. Deborah Radisch
  • Jason Davis as Fred Atwater
  • Frank Feys as Denis Poncet
  • Jean-Luc McMurtry as Gaultier

The Staircase is available to stream on HBO Max. Here’s how else to watch it for free.

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