Liz Heller

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Liz Heller
Alma materUniversity of California, Los Angeles
Occupation(s)Producer, entrepreneur
Board member ofThe Liberty Hill Foundation
SpouseJohn Bard Manulis
Parent(s)Billie Heller, Seymour Heller

Elizabeth "Liz" Heller is an American producer and entrepreneur. Described by USA Today as the "'godmother' of the women's cyber movement in Hollywood,"[1] Heller is noted for her early advocacy of the internet in the entertainment industry.[2][3][4]

Early life and education[edit]

Heller was born in Los Angeles and raised in Beverly Hills, California, the daughter of Seymour Heller, a personal manager, and Billie Heller, a women's rights activist.[5] She attended the University of California, Los Angeles.[6]


Heller began her career as an assistant at Epic Records. In 1983, she was hired by MCA Records; as an artist development executive, Heller commissioned more than 500 music videos for artists including Bobby Brown, Belinda Carlisle, and Tom Petty.[7] She remained at MCA until 1990, when she was appointed president of Island Visual Arts.[8][9] In 1994, Heller began working at Capitol Records, where she served as vice president of new media, and gained attention for developing early strategic alliances between the label and Microsoft, Macromedia, Liquid Audio and Apple, among other technology companies.[10] Additionally, Heller acted as an executive producer on several of the label's soundtrack releases.[11][12] She was named executive vice president of Capitol in 1996.[13]

While at Capitol, Heller was reunited with music video director Scott Kalvert, who she had worked with at Island Visual Arts. Kalvert, who grew up in New York, had spent more than a decade unsuccessfully "making the studio rounds," trying to get Jim Carroll's autobiography, The Basketball Diaries, made into a film. Excited by the idea, Heller took the project to her former boss, Chris Blackwell, who agreed to invest in the film. Heller produced The Basketball Diaries, which starred Leonardo DiCaprio, released by Palm Pictures in 1995.[14]

Heller founded Buzztone, a marketing company, in 2000. Focused on brand building, cause marketing, social media, and ecommerce strategies, Buzztone's clients have included Microsoft, Paramount Pictures, Electronic Arts, Product(RED), Sony Pictures, and Coca-Cola.[15][16] She has been a strategic partnership and initiative adviser for TOMS since 2008.[17][18]

From 2000 through 2002, Heller served as the managing director of Prime Ventures, an investment firm founded by Richard Rosenblatt.[19] In 2010, she founded Vwalls,[20] a social publishing platform, with her husband, John Bard Manulis.[21]

Heller is on the board of directors for uWink and the advisory board for Boopsie. She is a frequent speaker at conferences, events, and seminars worldwide.[22][23]

Heller is a mentor for X Media Lab, a digital media think tank,[24] and hosts regular networking events for women in Los Angeles. She is a member of the Los Angeles Sustainable Business Council,[21] and is active in the Liberty Hill Foundation. Heller and Manulis were presented with the Liberty Hill Founder's Award in 2010.[25]


Heller lives with her husband John Bard Manulis in Los Angeles.

Honors and distinctions[edit]

  • Founders Award, Liberty Hill Foundation, 2010
  • Best in the Business, NARIP, 2009
  • Rising Star, National Association of Women Business Owners, 2004
  • Executive director, Grammy Awards host committee, 1993
  • Cable Ace Award nomination, New Orleans Live, 1992


Year Album Artist Credit
2012 Live! Toots & the Maytals Executive producer (DVD)
2005 One Fair Summer Evening...Plus! Nanci Griffith Executive producer (DVD)
1999 Blast from the Past (film) Various Artists Executive producer (soundtrack)
1999 Lost & Found Various Artists Executive producer (soundtrack)
1999 Never Been Kissed Various Artists Producer (soundtrack)
1999 Teaching Mrs. Tingle Various Artists Executive producer (soundtrack)
1998 Boogie Nights, Vol. 2 Various Artists Executive producer (soundtrack)
1998 Hope Floats (Original Soundtrack) Dave Grusin Music supervisor
1998 There's Something About Mary Various Artists Music supervisor
1997 Good Will Hunting Various Artists Executive producer (soundtrack)
1997 Scream 2 Various Artists Producer (soundtrack)
1997 Making a Noise: A Native American Musical Journey Executive producer (TV special)
1996 Nico Blind Melon Executive producer
1996 Romeo + Juliet Various Artists Executive producer (soundtrack)
1996 Bonnie Raitt: Road Tested Bonnie Raitt Executive producer (TV special)
1995 The Basketball Diaries Producer (film)
1993 Let the Good Times Roll Various artists Executive producer (TV series)
1993 Rhythms of the World Various artists Executive producer (TV special)
1992 New Orleans Live! Various artists Executive producer (TV series)
1991 Through Time P.O.V. Anthrax Executive producer (long form video)
1986 Live by the Bay Jimmy Buffett Executive producer (Live concert video)



  1. ^ Haring, Bruce (April 28, 1997). Creative Juices flowing into on-line entertainment. New York. p. 3D. {{cite book}}: |website= ignored (help)CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  2. ^ Essex, Bruce (April 20, 1996). Multimedia Sound and Music Studio (Apple Newmedia Library). New York: Random House Information Group. pp. 382–384. ISBN 978-0679761914.
  3. ^ Stets, Dan (April 11, 1996). "The Video Isn't Quite There Yet, But The Computer As Home Entertainment Center Isn't Far Off". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  4. ^ Kaplan, Karen (July 12, 1995). "The Cutting Edge: COMPUTING / TECHNOLOGY / INNOVATION : Listening Boom : Music-Oriented Sites Lead the World Wide Web Hit Parade". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  5. ^ Times Staff (October 15, 2001). "Seymour Heller, 87; Managed Liberace's Career for 37 Years". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  6. ^ Jolna, Karon (February 2007). "Finding a Formula for Success" (PDF). UCLA. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 April 2014. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  7. ^ Heim, Chris (September 4, 1988). "Tuning Up Music Videos". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  8. ^ Variety Staff (May 6, 1991). "Mystic Fire, IVA Ink Distrib Deal". Variety. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  9. ^ "VH1 Enters Year Two". Billboard. April 12, 1986. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  10. ^ Delicos, Trixie (March–April 1996). Who's Wiring Hollywood? Liz Heller. Los Angeles: Network News. pp. 6, 10, 15.
  11. ^ Essex, Andrew (December 27, 1998). "MUSIC; Forget the Movie. Listen to the CD". The New York Times. Retrieved 29 January 2014.
  12. ^ Crowe, Jerry (May 20, 1998). "'Godzilla,' 'Armageddon' to Slug It Out". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  14. ^ Eller, Claudia (January 25, 1995). "The 'Diaries' of a Miracle : After 15 Years, Jim Carroll's Cult Classic Makes It to Film". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  15. ^ "Executive Profile: Liz Heller". Bloomberg BusinessWeek. 2014. Retrieved 2 February 2014.[dead link]
  16. ^ Iaffaldono, Anthony (October 13, 2006). "Bono's (Red) Campaign is Cross-Media Magic". Reprise Media. Archived from the original on 27 April 2014. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  17. ^ Gordon, Sandra (September 24, 2012). "Can shoes like Toms bring people together?". Consumer Reports Shop Smart. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  18. ^ Mycocksie, Blake (2012). Start Something That Matters. New York: Spiegal & Grau. p. 85. ISBN 978-0812981445.
  19. ^ Vrana, Deborah (July 17, 2000). "New Internet Venture for IMall Co-Founder". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  20. ^ "Vwalls". Vwalls. 2014. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  21. ^ a b "Elizabeth "Liz" Heller". Sustainable Business Council, Los Angeles. 2014. Retrieved 29 January 2014.
  22. ^ "Career Moves: April 10, 2007". Digital Media Wire. April 2007. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved February 2, 2014.
  23. ^ "About Us (Boopsie)". Boopsie for Libraries. 2014. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  24. ^ "Liz Heller: Mentor". X Media Lab. 2014. Archived from the original on 25 October 2013. Retrieved 2 February 2014.
  25. ^ "Founders Award: John Manulis and Liz Heller". Liberty Hill. 2011. Retrieved February 2, 2014.
  26. ^ "Liz Heller at AllMusic". AllMusic Guide. 2014. Retrieved 29 January 2014.