CCU alum Amy Hall returns to campus for screening of groundbreaking film 'Segfault'
by Sara Sobota
As the most recent step in her career, Amy Hall (’00) purchased Barbershop Marketing in Dallas in 2016. But she didn’t stop with the achievement of owning her own firm. With a wealth of creativity, initiative and talented team members, Hall produced a full-length feature film within a revolutionary genre, and she returned to CCU to share it with students, faculty and the area community.
After graduating from CCU with a degree in fine/studio art in 2000, Hall began a career in the marketing industry that’s taken her from Florida to Dallas and from Audi to CBS Radio to AllOver Media. As president of Barbershop Marketing, she oversees 14 employees and millions of dollars a year in revenue. While she couldn’t have foreseen at the time of her graduation how her career would evolve, she utilizes on a daily basis the creativity and artistic skills she developed during her undergraduate years.
“I’m not painting, I’m not sculpting every day, but I get to be creative for my clients, I get to think creatively, and I get to think outside of the box,” Hall said. “I’ve been open to taking risks and trusting my gut, and that’s led me to this point. I’m very fulfilled,” Hall said.
Hall’s film project within Barbershop Marketing derived from a desire to create a film unlike any other. “Segfault” premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and will be released in the United States in the next few months. Both the film’s process and its product are uniquely innovative; “Segfault” was shot sequentially in a 24-hour period in 18 different locations throughout the United States, with no second takes.
The main character, Blair (Shannon Lucio), was given no story, no script, and no background on the nature of the situation. She was blindfolded – not allowed to see her hair, clothing, or makeup – and taken to the initial setting: a hotel room, where she wakes up with a dead body in the room. The story evolves from there, through a decision tree model in which scripted characters interact with Blair and improvise action based on her progressive decisions.
The other goal for Hall and her production crew through “Segfault” was to make an inventive film without spending the hundreds of millions of dollars usually invested into such a project.
“We approached it from an agency perspective,” said Hall. We thought, ‘I wonder if we could come up with something creative and different that’s never been done before, but also with the end goal of having a commercial product. And could we do it for a shoestring budget, using just the resources that we have?’ And that’s how we decided to make this movie.”
Hall’s visit to the CCU campus serves as a homecoming, but also an educational as well as entertainment experience. Hall presented a lecture to students about her experiences in marketing and filmmaking, and she hopes her visit will be one of a long series of such events. Hall recently made a gift to the Edwards College of Humanities and Fine Arts to promote future interaction between alumni and current students, titled the Amy Hall Student and Alumni Program Fund in Visual Arts.
Hall said she recalls fondly and values her time and education at CCU, and she urges students to allow their career plans to change and develop as opportunities arise.
“Does my career look differently than I thought it would when I graduated with this art degree?” said Hall. “Yes, 100 percent. But just because it looks differently and you go down a different path, it doesn’t mean you can’t find what you’re meant to do. I feel like I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing, and I’m sitting in the right seat, and that’s a really great feeling.”