Behind the Mask
With endorsements from The Financial Times, The Los Angeles Times and a roster of long-standing clients, we’re proud to reveal our true identity.
After several years working at other agencies, founder Julie Weinhouse felt that she could disrupt the industry with the application of a few key efficiencies. Her unique changes to the standard operating systems worked and they’ve kept HERO an industry leader for over 20 years.
This is the HERO system:
- With our manageable roster, the Sidekick and a lean staff (ok, there’s Spanx under our unitards), HERO is positioned to optimize every possible opportunity, keep overhead down and, to coin a phrase, pass the savings on to you.
- Brands have specific images, targeted demos and stories. HERO’s entire staff learns our client’s branding intricacies and finds the placements to amplify them. We provide natural, seamless product placement integrations without compromising our client’s or production’s creative message.
- We maintain an on-premise warehouse so productions get what they need when they need it. Moreover, the Sidekick’s inventory control keeps us up-to-the-minute on the whereabouts of our clients’ property.
- HERO handles all legal clearances and contracts.
- The Sidekick offers up-to-the-minute reports on all projects, provides the ability to download media with estimated impressions and media values, and the opportunity to create reports on the fly.
Okay, so maybe we’ve never untied someone from train tracks or thwarted an evil scientist bent on destroying the world, but we do have a kryptonite-proof reputation, an office full of happy associates and a roster of pleased clients. And that makes us feel, well, super.
Julie Weinhouse, Principal
When the Los Angeles Times referred to HERO as Product Placement with a Conscience it served as validation in print for all the efforts Julie Weinhouse has made since opening the agency in 1997. Now a well-established boutique agency handling a limited roster of national and internationally known brands, she has earned another confirmation of her ethical hard work; the majority of the clients HERO represents have been with the agency for nearly a decade. The agency can boast delivering billions of impressions and hundreds of millions of dollars in media values to its clients. She has represented brands in such varied categories as automotive, packaged goods, technology, QSR, home improvement, publications, franchise services and alcohol.
Julie has served as the Entertainment Resources Marketing Association’s Treasurer for two terms (2003-2004), winning the second term as a write in candidate. Though supported by an exceptional team, she remains in charge of day-to-day operations, overseeing the management of all accounts, keeping her presence and influence vital.
Off the clock she can be found somewhere in nature with her hubby hiking, stand up paddle boarding and river rafting or deep in a third world country eating street food and drinking their local beer.
HERO is a certified women owned business by WBENC.
Steve Ochs, Principal
Steve has been with HERO since its inception. An experienced show business veteran, his work as writer and producer has been seen on every major network and many cable networks as well. This behind the scenes experience offers HERO clients a great insider’s advantage.
As a member of the Writers Guild of America, SAG and AFTRA, Steve has accumulated an eclectic list of credentials and insider friends. His creative input has helped HERO clients find a place in productions that otherwise never would have known they needed them. Steve lends his voice to all matters including company direction, branding and sales.
Steve’s current extracurricular project, a book called MIDMEN: The Modern Man’s Guide to Surviving Midlife Crisis is a #1 Amazon Bestseller and has won several awards including the International Book Award, the USA Book Award and the Beverly Hills Book Award.
Fortunately Steve’s choices for downtime coordinate perfectly with Julie’s since the pair have been living, working and playing together for over 30 years!
Trisha Cohen, Office Manager
Trisha went to F.I.D.M. and majored in Interior Design; her lifelong dream was to become a set decorator, so getting hired at a product placement agency was a dream come true for her. Not only was she able to work with the best set decorators and property masters in the industry, she was able to help productions with their design choices. She is our resident expert on all things home improvement and decor. She is credited with securing literally countless media impressions for the Lumber Liquidators and kitchen cabinets available from Cabinets To Go. Did someone say Haworth? Trisha has placed their office chairs in hundreds of shows, under the biggest names in the business! Trish earned the nickname Eagle Eye at HERO for virtually never missing a client exposure during her daily scan of TV shows. Her dedication is shown in her work ethic. She’s professional, quick and always wears a smile. She’s an invaluable part of the HERO team!
In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her teenage daughter and her animals. She’s always on the hunt of finding her next “thrift store” treasure. If she’s not working you can find her roller skating, having sushi with her friend or driving on the 14 Freeway.
Hila Assifi, Project Manager
After graduating UCI with a major in Film & Media studies, Hila was focused on working in the entertainment industry. With production assistance and script coverage under her belt, it was no coincidence that HERO would be her next venture forward. Starting off as the Administrative Assistant and the welcoming voice that answered all inquiring calls, she soon made her way to Coordinator through diligence and lightning speed service. Four years later, we find her in her lair as Project Manager connecting our clients with productions. From reading scripts and creating legal clearances, to finding just that right placement that satisfies productions and delights clients, Hila is indispensible member of team HERO!
Other than entertaining her coworkers with her hilarious impressions and enthusiastic facial expressions, on her time off, Hila likes to go bike riding at the beach with her beau, watch a hit show on stage, or do some DIY crafts at home.