Hall was born in Raleigh, North Carolina. His mother, Janice (née Styons) Hall, is a mental health counselor at Lees-McRae College, and his father, William Carlyle Hall, worked for IBM. Hall grew up an only child as his sister died in infancy before his birth. His father died of prostate cancer in 1982, at the age of 39, when Hall was eleven years old.
He was recommended for the role of David Fisher by Sam Mendes who directed the film American Beauty, which was written by Alan Ball, since he had worked with Hall in stage productions. This was Hall's first television role.
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