What You Don't Know About Regina Hall

Regina Hall was tapped to take the stage at the Oscars on March 27, 2022, alongside her fellow hosts Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes. Hall said she was looking forward to the event, telling IndieWire that the trio is really looking forward to the experience. As she put it, they kind of have it all. Hall explained, "We got the gamut — we got a gay woman, we got a Black woman, we got a white woman, we got a lot going on the stage. So we're really excited."

This milestone is another one on the career path of a woman who got her start in 2000 when she was cast in the "Scary Movie" spoof horror films. But these days, Hall says she is in a much more grounded place when it comes to the role she takes and why she chooses them. As she told The New York Times Magazine, that's because she feels differently about what it really means to be successful. She explained, "My idea of success has changed. Now I think about it more in terms of present-moment happiness than 'if this happens then that might happen.'"

Here are a few things you might not know about one third of the host team of the 2022 Oscars!

Regina Hall planned to pursue journalism

While it's hard to imagine it now, there was a time during which Regina Hall never anticipated being an actress at all. In fact, she was in graduate school pursuing a degree in journalism when the tragic and unexpected passing of her father inspired her to completely change the course of her life. 

Hall told Health that her father's death caused a profound perspective shift for her. As she put it, that shift gave birth to a brand new career, one that she's gone on to be quite successful at. Hall explained, "That's what led me to acting. The thing about feeling broken is that it forces you to be open — you feel like you don't have much, so you don't overthink everything."

Hall made good on her new path, scoring the role of Brenda Meeks in the "Scary Movie" franchise in 2000. Since then, she has appeared in dozens movies and TV shows (per IMDb).

Regina Hall really loves dogs

Perhaps no one is more surprised than Regina Hall that she is such a passionate fan of dogs, especially as she told Modern Dog magazine that this wasn't always the case. Hall explained to the publication that there was a time in which she was pretty much the opposite of a dog person, saying, "I actually used to listen to people who did this or that for their animals and think they were crazy. I would see people crying over their dog dying, and I'd be like: 'Get another one.'"

Something changed one day when she saw a man with two French bulldogs outside and had a strong urge to have a French bulldog of her own. As she tells the tale, she decided to get one on her birthday. She met two dogs — one named Poncho, whom she described as gentle, and another that was "hyper." In the end, the hyper one won out, and she named him Zeus.

Hall quickly understood the appeal of dogs. She told Modern Dog Magazine, "Your dog just rides it out with you through the years, through so many experiences. He wasn't the dog I planned to get. But he is the best and the cutest."

She has a big crush on the Dalai Lama

Celebrities really are people just like the rest of us, which means they experience a lot of the same things we all do, including seemingly odd crushes that are often on other famous people. Regina Hall has been particularly open about her crush on the Dalai Lama. She told the New York Post, "He's the cutest thing!"

It turns out that Hall has even had the chance to meet her crush, and while doing so she made sure she didn't waste the opportunity. She said, "When he turned 80, he had a birthday dinner and they asked me to be on a panel, and we each had to ask him a question. I asked for a kiss."

Hall doubled down on her crush when she was interviewed by The Courier Mail. She joked that the Dalai Lama is really her one true crush, saying, "Ohhhh, I love him, if he would only have me. But, he seems kind of, you know, stuck on being the Dalai Lama." Though in all seriousness, it sounds like Hall has a tremendous respect for the leader. As she told the publication, her favorite thing about him is that he really engages with someone while speaking to them, making them feel like they are the only people in that moment.

Regina Hall considered becoming a nun

Regina Hall grew up attending classes at Catholic schools, and she's been open about her ongoing connection with the faith throughout her life and as an adult. While speaking to The Fader, Hall revealed that she's even thought about becoming a nun not once but twice in her lifetime.

As Hall tells it, the first time she considered the life path, she was only 14 years old. As she put it, nuns seemed especially comforting to her. She explained, "They ran our school and were so smart. They didn't have to worry about what to wear." She went on to add that quite a few teenage girls were considering joining the convent around the same time, and she contemplated doing so as well.

The second time Hall almost became a nun she was an adult, and she explains that she came to a realization that shaped her thought process. Hall shared, "I wanted to do it because I find that my happiest places are when I'm in a really spiritual place."

Regina Hall once worked as a professor

Like a lot of future stars, Regina Hall has definitely had her fair share of odd jobs as she pieced together a successful life in the industry. However, Hall wasn't always set on becoming an actress, and, in fact, was working toward a graduate degree in journalism before she changed course. While at school, Hall also worked as a professor and even put in a lot of effort to both act and look the part.

While speaking on "Late Night with Seth Meyers," Hall explained that her age contributed to how she conducted herself in the classroom. She said, "I thought I was good. I was strict. I was strict because I was young," noting, "That particular campus was for students who were coming back to school so we were all similar in age." She went on to add that she also felt that she had to look a certain way as a professor, even wearing a headwrap because it would make her look "academic." She shared, "It didn't at all. It just made me look like a woman in a headwrap."

Her father's death changed her life's trajectory

Regina Hall received her undergraduate degree at the Catholic university Fordham University in New York City. She took a few months off of school following the program, unsure of what she wanted to do. As she told The New York Times Magazine, she was interested in acting at the time, but her father didn't believe the profession was viable. So after some contemplation, she decided to head into journalism based on a recent interest in both Ted Koppel's "Nightline" and Alexis de Tocqueville's "Democracy in America."

Things changed completely after Hall's father had a stroke, and her entire worldview changed. He sadly died, which made the actress realize how delicate life really is. She explained, "It was shocking. It wasn't so clear cut that I would go into acting then, but I thought, Wow, your life could change at any moment."

Regina Hall is a big fan of Elizabeth Taylor

Like a lot of film and TV stars, Regina Hall finds inspiration in other people who currently work or have worked in the industry. In 2014, Hall took on a brand ambassadorship with White Diamonds Lustre by Elizabeth Taylor and revealed to Ebony that she's been a longtime fan of the actress. She said, "I'm actually a big fan of Elizabeth Taylor. She was always someone who I felt had the combination of beauty and talent." 

In a separate interview with Madame Noire, Hall added that she's been inspired by the way Taylor carried herself on and off the red carpet. She explained, "Her work that she did throughout her entire career — I watched her on 'General Hospital.'" She continued, "What I always loved [about] her was that she was elegant. Whenever I do red carpet looks one of the things that I like is to always make sure that there's a sense of elegance and class." As such, it's not a surprise that Hall leapt at the opportunity to represent a woman that she's looked up to for so long.

The actress takes care of her mother

While Regina Hall's father died when she was still a graduate student, Hall currently helps support her mother, who has the skin condition scleroderma. Hall told Ability Magazine what the condition means for her mom, explaining that it's more complex than one might assume and can even impact internal organs. She said, "My mom was diagnosed with scleroderma about six years ago. It affects the skin and some other organs, and can take several forms."

Hall's mother also battles Raynaud's, which means she is often quite cold and needs assistance when she wants to get groceries from the store or when she might be out in colder temperatures. She additionally suffered from a small stroke in 2010, though Hall told the publication that her mother was handling her post-stroke therapy well at the time. She said, "She does rehab three days a week and it's really been great, too, helping her strengthen her left side. She's been stair-climbing, she's been walking."

Regina Hall is happy being unmarried

In 2014, Regina Hall was asked by Madame Noire if she feels anything negative about the fact that she wasn't married yet. Hall was upfront about the fact that while she might be unmarried, she's really at peace and happy with her life as it is. As she noted, Western culture tends to be a lot of emphasis on tying the knot as an important step in adulthood, but that doesn't mean everyone has to follow that timeline. She explained, "I know that in our culture and in a lot of cultures there exists that as an ideal that a woman should be married. That is the period of exclamation point upon the sentence of her life."

However, Hall also acknowledged that if marriage was the right thing for her in the future, she'd be completely open to it. She said, "But that doesn't mean that I think marriage wouldn't be great. It just means that in this particular moment this is what life has been generous enough to offer and so I say yes to it."

Gardening helps soothe her

Like a lot of us, Regina Hall deals with plenty of stress and anxiety. She's found a few different ways to contend with it, telling Parade that one way she combats negative feelings is by gardening. Specifically, she finds a lot of solace when she is able to spend time outside in her garden doing what so many of us hate: weeding.

It might be tough to imagine that someone who is as successful as Hall has a hard time at all, but the actress has been open about the various anxiety-inducing situations she's been in and what she's had to face. In addition to spending time in her garden, Hall told Parade that sometimes her own thoughts can do a lot to calm her down. She explained, "I try not to look at the gigantic picture. Instead, I'll think, 'What do I have to do next?' That keeps me from getting overwhelmed."

The pandemic made Regina Hall grow closer to her family

While a lot of us have been wrapped up in the ongoing health crisis caused by the COVID-19 virus, Regina Hall has managed to find a bit of happiness in the experience. As she explained to Parade, one bright side of the entire pandemic is that she and her family are closer than ever. As she told the publication, despite having to spend some time in Australia for work, Hall has managed to focus on the people who matter to her the most.

She explained that the health crisis has been a giant wake-up call in terms of figuring out what's really important. Hall shared, "The pandemic was a reminder of how much I wanted my family to be okay, for them to be safe. I was very aware that we don't know what will happen, so just making sure that your family is safe and healthy, and that you're communicating how much you love them is always important."

Regina Hall also writes scripts

Acting isn't the only thing Regina Hall can do in the entertainment industry — it turns out that she's also a talented script writer. As The Hollywood Reporter has noted, Hall and her neighbor were working on a project together that they hoped to promote right before the COVID-19 pandemic hit hard.

However, it turns out this wasn't Hall's first attempt at writing a script. In fact, she and good friend and fellow actress Issa Rae wrote a movie together that they even pitched to around seven different studios, only to have it turned down each time. As Essence revealed, one of the studios the pair approached didn't even bother to call the two women back, a fact that Rae, in particular, took great offense to while recounting the story on the publication's "Yes Girl!" podcast. 

While the project didn't pan out, Hall told the podcast host that she hopes to make it happen one day. She said, "Movies come out. You gotta revamp it; we will."

She hopes to work with Brad Pitt

Like a lot of people who are invested into continuing to build their careers, Regina Hall has a lot of goals. One of them concerns fellow star Brad Pitt, with whom she'd like to to work. As she told The Hollywood Reporter in 2020, the actress worried during the pandemic that she'll get her opportunity but not be able to take it all the way. Hall joked, "So I love Brad Pitt, and I want to work with Brad Pitt. I was thinking, it would be my luck that I'll get to work with Brad Pitt and I'll be like, 'With COVID, how could I force a kissing scene?'"

While working out how to make all her dreams come true might be daunting, Hall quickly told the publication that she would figure out a COVID-safe way to make a kiss with Pitt happen.

Regina Hall is proud of her background in spoof horror movies

For a lot of people, Regina Hall broke into entertainment when she was cast in the "Scary Movie" franchise in 2000. Luckily, Hall is just as big a fan of the films as most people are, and she told Collider that being able to work in the genre of spoof horror was really a blast. As she put it, the team she worked with was especially ideal. Hall said, "I love all genres when they're done well, so I felt really lucky to be doing the spoof genre with the Wayans because I feel like Keenen [Ivory Wayans] really understood it."

Hall also dove into the subtle differences that take place when filming a spoof horror film, noting that the genre isn't really one specific thing. As she said, putting her character together was quite the process. She said, "As crazy as it sounds, Brenda was really real. You weren't playing the parody, you're not playing the horror."