Hero (Enrique Iglesias song)

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Single by Enrique Iglesias
from the album Escape
Released September 3, 2001
Format CD single
Recorded 2001
Genre Latin pop, pop
Length 4:24 (album version)
4:11 (radio edit)
Label Interscope
Producer(s) Mark Taylor
Certification Platinum (ARIA)
Platinum (BPI)
Enrique Iglesias singles chronology
"Sad Eyes"

"Hero" is a single by Spanish singer-songwriter Enrique Iglesias from his second English-language studio album Escape (2001). It was written by Iglesias, Paul Barry and Mark Taylor. Iglesias first released the song to radio on 3 September 2001 to a positive critical and commercial reception.

After the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center, the song was one of the few songs chosen by radio DJs in New York City to be remixed with audio from police, firefighters, civilians at Ground Zero, and politicians commenting on the attacks. He was asked to sing the song live at the Benefit Concern America: A Tribute to Heroes ten days after the September 11, 2001 attacks. Iglesias broadcast his performance from a warehouse in New York alongside Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi, and Sheryl Crow. The location of the warehouse was kept secret in case of further attacks. It was Iglesias's first televised performance of the song. He had performed the song earlier at that year's Miss Venezuela but due to the terrorist attacks the show was not aired on television.

The American television series Glee featured a version of the song as a mashup mixed with the Gipsy Kings' "Bamboléo". The release from the twelfth episode (called "The Spanish Teacher") in season 3 of the show is named "Bambolero/Hero". The main vocals were done by Chord Overstreet (playing the character Sam Evans). An Italian version of this song was covered by Micheal Castaldo, in his album Bergamot.


During a 2013 radio interview with Ryan Seacrest, Iglesias spoke about his inspiration for the song being his high school days. He stated, "I went back to when I was 17 in high school, and this might be cheesy, but I thought about what would be the song I want to slow dance to with my prom date. When I wrote it, it felt good and ... I thought I know there is something special in this song."[1]

Chart performance[edit]

"Hero" topped many charts in the US including the Billboard adult contemporary chart for fifteen weeks.[2] On the latter, the song would re-enter the top ten a year later, the first song ever to do so. The song peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart,[2] though it is actually his most played song on the chart, outdoing prior singles "Bailamos" and "Be with You", both of which went to number one on the chart. A remixed recording also topped the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart in January 2002.

In February 2002, the song was released in the UK, where it went straight to number one for four weeks, becoming one of the biggest hits of the year there. Up to this point, Iglesias had already had two hits in the UK but was largely unknown. "Hero" was seen as his breakthrough in the UK and Escape became one of the best-selling albums of 2002. With sales of 836,500, "Hero" was the 17th best-selling single of the 2000s in the UK. In April 2015, it was announced that the song had sold 1 million copies in the UK.[3]

In Australia, the song reached number one on the ARIA Chart, becoming his first number-one in that country. The song also topped the charts in Spain, Switzerland, the Philippines, Romania, Ireland and Canada. This is one of Iglesias' best-selling singles and has sold 8 million copies.[citation needed]

Music videos[edit]

The music video for "Hero" was directed by Joseph Kahn and features Iglesias as an honorable criminal hunted by his enemies. Jennifer Love Hewitt plays his love interest,[4] while Mickey Rourke plays one of the men hunting him. The video follows Iglesias and Hewitt running from their enemies in the desert. Finally, Iglesias' enemies track him down and confront him outside a church. The confrontation leads to Iglesias being floored by Rourke, before being struck with a baton. The video skips ahead where Iglesias and Hewitt are seen in the rain surrounded by police cars. Iglesias, though heavily injured, walks towards Hewitt and breaks down beside her. The video ends with Iglesias' death.

In addition to this video a second video was made for the UK with less violence. The final shot of this video shows Iglesias' legs moving, suggesting that he's not dead. While originally made for the UK, this video has since replaced the original video on many music video stations throughout the world.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Hero" (Album Version) - 4:24
  2. "Hero" (Metro Mix - English Version) - 3:28
  3. "Bailamos" (Album Version) - 3:37
  4. "Hero" (Video) - 4:24
UK CD2 - the remixes
  1. "Hero" (Metro Mix - English Version) - 4:19
  2. "Hero" (Ventura & Colombo Remix) - 3:43
  3. "Hero" (Metro Mix - Spanish Version) - 4:19
  4. "Hero" (Thunderpuss Radio Edit) - 3:18
DE CD single
  1. "Hero" (Radio Edit) - 4:11
  2. "Be With You" (Thunderpuss Radio Mix) - 3:56
  3. "Hero" (Metro Mix - Spanish Version) - 4:19
Japanese CD single
  1. "Hero" (Radio Edit) - 4:11
  2. "Be With You" (Thunderpuss 2000 Remix) - 7:46
  3. "Hero" (Metro Mix - Spanish Version) - 3:28
Japanese Hero/Escape maxi single[5]
  1. "Hero" (Album Version) - 4:27
  2. "Escape" (Album Version) - 3:30
  3. "Hero" (Instrumental Version) - 4:23

Television and film soundtracks[edit]

"Hero" has become wildly popular due in part to the fact that it has been featured in many television shows and movies around the world. The earliest appearance of the song on an American television show was on a 2001 episode of The WB show Smallville entitled "Craving". Since then the song has been featured in such American sitcoms and reality television shows as Scrubs, Saturday Night Live: The Best of Jimmy Fallon, Glee, The X Factor, So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing with the Stars and the mini-series I Love the New Millennium The song has also been featured in such international television shows as Hinter Gittern - Der Frauenknast and So You Think You Can Dance Canada. Numerous films also feature the song, including Hot Tub Time Machine, Premios Amigo 2001, Zoom, Lady Godiva, Drillbit Taylor, Don Quixote, and Beverly Hills Chihuahua.

Although the song has appeared in many television shows and movies the first televised performance of the song was scheduled to be Iglesias's performance of the song at the Miss Venezuela Pageant on 11 September 2001, but this performance was not televised due to the terrorist attacks just days before. The actual first televised performance of the song was when Iglesias performed the song at the America: A Tribute to Heroes concert on 21 September, ten days after the attacks.[6]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Ceremony Award Result
2002 My VH1 Music Awards Best Actor in a Video (Jennifer Love Hewitt) Nominated
Is It Hot In Here, Or Is It Just My Video Nominated
The Record of the Year Award Record of the Year Nominated
Billboard Latin Music Awards Latin Dance Club/Play Track of the Year Won
Canadian Fannie Awards Favourite Video Nominated
Comet Awards Best Male Video Won
MTV Europe Music Awards Best Song Nominated
Lo Nuestro Award Video of the Year Won
Los Premios MTV Latinoamerica Video of the Year Won
MTV Video Music Awards Best Male Video Nominated
Viewer's Choice Nominated
MTV Latin America (North) Nominated
MTV Latin America (Pacific) Won
2003 ASCAP Pop Music Awards Song of the Year Won
Ivor Novello Awards Best Selling UK Single Nominated

Charts and certifications[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Marquina, Sierra (24 September 2013). "Enrique Iglesias on New Single 'Heart Attack,' His Writing Process.". RyanSeacrest.com. Retrieved 12 April 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 8th Edition (Billboard Publications)
  3. ^ a b Myers, Justin (25 April 2015). "Ed Sheeran's Thinking Out Loud passes one million sales". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 25 April 2015. 
  4. ^ Manan, Dazman (October 12, 2002). "At Home with Hewitt". Life & Times. Retrieved August 14, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Amazon.co.jp: ヒーロー/エスケイプ: エンリケ・イグレシアス: 音楽". amazon.co.jp. Retrieved 2011-06-09. 
  6. ^ Axelrod-Contrada, Joan. "Iglesias, Enrique: 1975—: Singer, Songwriter." Contemporary Hispanic Biography. 2002. Encyclopedia.com. 2 Apr. 2015 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.
  7. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Enrique Iglesias – Hero". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  8. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Enrique Iglesias – Hero" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  9. ^ "Ultratop.be – Enrique Iglesias – Hero" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  10. ^ "Ultratop.be – Enrique Iglesias – Hero" (in French). Ultratop 50.
  11. ^ Steffen Hung. "Danish charts portal". danishcharts.com. Retrieved 2011-02-22. 
  12. ^ "Lescharts.com – Enrique Iglesias – Hero" (in French). Les classement single.
  13. ^ "Officialcharts.de – Enrique Iglesias – Hero". GfK Entertainment.
  14. ^ "Chart Track: Week 2, 2002". Irish Singles Chart.
  15. ^ "Italiancharts.com – Enrique Iglesias – Hero". Top Digital Download.
  16. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Enrique Iglesias – Hero". Top 40 Singles.
  17. ^ "Topp 20 Single uke 1, 2002 – VG-lista. Offisielle hitlister fra og med 1958" (in Norwegian). VG-lista.
  18. ^ "Nielsen Music Control". Archived from the original on 2008-05-08. 
  19. ^ "Top40-charts.com". Retrieved November 24, 2015. 
  20. ^ [1][dead link]
  21. ^ "Spanishcharts.com – Enrique Iglesias – Hero" Canciones Top 50.
  22. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Enrique Iglesias – Hero". Swiss Singles Chart.
  23. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Enrique Iglesias – Hero". Singles Top 60.
  24. ^ "Archive Chart: 2002-01-27" UK Singles Chart.
  25. ^ "Enrique Iglesias – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Enrique Iglesias.
  26. ^ "Enrique Iglesias – Chart history" Billboard Adult Contemporary for Enrique Iglesias.
  27. ^ "Enrique Iglesias – Chart history" Billboard Adult Pop Songs for Enrique Iglesias.
  28. ^ "Enrique Iglesias – Chart history" Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs for Enrique Iglesias.
  29. ^ "Enrique Iglesias – Chart history" Billboard Hot Latin Songs for Enrique Iglesias.
  30. ^ "Enrique Iglesias – Chart history" Billboard Pop Songs for Enrique Iglesias.
  31. ^ "ARIA Charts - End of Year Charts - Top 100 Singles 2002". Aria.com.au. Retrieved 2011-02-22. 
  32. ^ "ChartsPlus Year-end 2002" (PDF). UKChartsPlus. Retrieved 13 July 2015. 
  33. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 2002". Retrieved 2011-03-12. 
  34. ^ "ARIA Chart Sales - End of Decade Top 100 Singles" (PDF). Aria.com.au. Retrieved 2014-04-02. 
  35. ^ Radio 1 Official Chart of the Decade, as broadcast on BBC Radio 1 on 29 December 2009, presented by DJ Nihal
  36. ^ [2][dead link]
  37. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2002 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. 
  38. ^ "Austrian single certifications – Enrique Iglesias – Hero" (in German). IFPI Austria.  Enter Enrique Iglesias in the field Interpret. Enter Hero in the field Titel. Select single in the field Format. Click Suchen
  39. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Enrique Iglesias; 'Hero')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. 
  40. ^ "Guld- och Platinacertifikat − År 2002" (PDF) (in Swedish). IFPI Sweden. 
  41. ^ "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Enrique Iglesias; 'Hero')". Hung Medien. 
  42. ^ "British single certifications – Enrique Iglesias – Hero". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Hero in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search

External links[edit]