An Interview with E! News Correspondent Zuri Hall

ALUMNI

Last year, Zuri Hall (BA, communication, 2010) became the newest correspondent for E! News, where she interviews musicians, actors and entertainers. Here, she talks about how she got her job and offers some advice.

Tell us about yourself. 

I was a four-year Morrill Scholar and graduated from Ohio State with a BA in strategic communication and a minor in theatre. I was an active member of the Black Student Theatre Network and of Ohio Union Television. 

What do you do for E! Entertainment Television?

I’m an on-air correspondent for E! News, and every day is different. Some days I do stand-ups and traditional host-reads in the newsroom or in-studio, on the E! News set. Other evenings I’m covering film premiere red carpets. I do one-on-one sit-down interviews with musicians, actors and entertainers. During awards season, I’m a special correspondent/co-host for E!’s popular Live From the Red Carpet shows. I also produce, so I write and oversee the editing of those stories, from start to finish.

How did you land your job?

Developing and utilizing professional relationships is a major part of any industry. Being represented by a well-connected agency is a major help. My agent knew the position was going to become available, and when she told me about it, I jumped at the opportunity. An agent can get you into a room, but your talent and experience is what keeps you there.

What advice would you give to students looking to enter your industry?

You have to create to keep your skills sharp, and you must develop a fresh perspective. Everyone has something to say, and in this digital age it’s easy to be drowned out in all the noise. So sharpen your craft, your delivery, the lens through which you view and communicate to the world. That’s what will make viewers want to hear “the same old information” from you, instead of the next person. 

“My tenacity is the one quality that has kept me afloat in difficult times. Success is not a straight and simple path, so be open to the winding road of life.” {Zuri Hall}

You have to want it more, be more patient and outwork your competition. True talent grouped with persistence and dedication will eventually make room for your breakthrough. There is more than one route to the same destination. Look at detours or setbacks as alternate routes that will prepare you for the place you are meant to eventually arrive.

What is your fondest Ohio State memory?

Football season! It’s not one specific memory; it’s the crisp, chilly air. The beauty of autumn as leaves change to burgundy, orange and gold while you walk alongside Mirror Lake. The high energy of game days when our team plays in the ’Shoe. Sweater weather and a fresh school year.

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