The Gina Renee Hall Story Coming to the Big Screen
For Immediate Release
Mactavish Pictures, NYC
(New York, NY) Film director Scott Mactavish has acquired the documentary rights to Under the Trestle: The 1980 Disappearance of Gina Renee Hall & Virginia’s First “No Body” Murder Trial. The film will be produced as a feature documentary and distributed to theaters, streaming platforms (iTunes, Amazon, etc.) and Blu Ray/DVD nationwide. Mactavish’s recent films include Ride for Lanceand MURPH: The Protector, based on LT Michael Murphy, a Navy SEAL who gave his life for his men and was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism. MURPHwas a contender for the Academy Award (Oscar) in several categories, including Best Feature Documentary.
“I was born and raised in Pulaski County and vividly remember the Epperly trial from high school,” said Mactavish. “Ron Peterson has done a masterful job of capturing the drama from those intense weeks in 1980. Under the Trestleis one of the best true-crime books I’ve ever read, and I’ve read a lot of them. I’m excited to return to southwest Virginia and honored to tell Gina’s story.”
Author Ron Peterson Jr. is also a producer on the project. “I’m thrilled to work with Scott to bring Gina Hall’s story to the screen. Scott brings a very unique perspective to the project, not only as an accomplished filmmaker, but as a guy with roots in the New River Valley.”
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“Under The Trestle” is the true story of the most compelling murder case in Virginia history. In 1980, beautiful Gina Renee Hall, a Radford University freshman, went to a Virginia Tech nightclub on a Saturday night. She was never seen again. Her abandoned car was found parked beneath a railroad trestle bridging the New River, with blood in the trunk. The investigation led police to a secluded cabin on Claytor Lake, where there was evidence of a violent attack. Former Virginia Tech football player Stephen Epperly was charged with murder, despite the fact that Gina’s body was never found. In Virginia’s “trial of the century,” prosecutor Everett Shockley presented an entirely circumstantial case. Key witnesses against Epperly included his best friend, his mother and a tracking dog handler later believed by many to be a fraud. Three former Virginia Tech football players testified, including a Hokies quarterback once featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Would Epperly become the first person in Virginia history convicted of murder without the victim’s body, an eyewitness or a confession? And would authorities ever find the body of Gina Renee Hall?