That the aspiring actress Amber Heard and the long-established – and 23 years older – Hollywood icon, Johnny Depp, should have said something nice to each other at some point – it seems unimaginable. In court, the two had publicly denounced each other so aggressively in the past three weeks that the losers of the trial had already been decided without a verdict being passed: the actors not only dismantled each other – but also themselves.
Heard and Depp met 2011 while filming “The Rum Diary” know. The wedding followed four years later, the year after the separation – and finally a violent war of roses. Not about real estate or money, but about reputation. The US actress accused her ex-husband of repeatedly abusing her verbally and physically during his alcohol and drug excesses.
2016 she posted a selfie of herself with a clearly visible one bruise on the cheek.
Dan Wootton, editor-in-chief of the British newspaper “The Sun”, described Depp 2018 in an article as a “wife thug”. In the post, he criticizes the writer Joanne K. Rowling for giving Depp a role in the film adaptation of “Fantastic Beasts”. Depp then sued the newspaper – and this lawsuit is still at issue. The closing statements were read out on Tuesday.
The verdict will be announced later, a date has not yet been determined. But if the newspaper were right, Amber Heard would also be indirectly involved.
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In the midst of the # MeToo debate, shortly after Heards and Depp's separation, the case initially seemed quickly resolved: Depp, who could never really lose his Captain-Jack-Sparrow image – or wanted to belong to the old white men for whom women are primarily there to deliver: sexual, caring and entertaining. The young, modern Amber Heard, who likes to take photos of herself on Instagram and write articles about her homosexuality for “Teen Vogue”, should have fallen victim to the old chauvinist.
Three weeks later, the clichés have completely reversed: Now Heard is the “hysterical” ex-wife, the vodka bottles after her husband at the time threw, slapped him in the face and defecated into his bed to “prank” him. A former employee accuses her of having spent a rape she had told her about in confidence as her own.
Former girlfriends agree with Depp
Meanwhile, Depp's ex-wife, Vanessa Paradies and his former girlfriend Winona Ryder via video messages, assuring him that he never hit them. Depp himself reports of depressive episodes before the court. And yes, once he had become violent and destroyed a hotel room in a frenzy, but he just smashed the sofa – no one was harmed.
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His alcohol and drug excesses nobody glosses over, but Depp also finds a way out: Heard accuses him of also being addicted. When the “Sun” lawyer Sasha Wass remarked that she had been drinking two or three glasses of wine in the evening, Depp said: “Rather two or three bottles!”
The public also suddenly appears to be on Depp's side: Despite the heavy accusation, many fans had gathered in front of the High Court in London on the last day of the trial. They handed him flowers and called Depp, who came in a gray suit and black shirt, to: “We love you!” and “Justice for Johnny!”.
Depp should use “old-fashioned methods to discredit women”
But nothing seemed decided in the courtroom. In their closing speeches, the lawyers on both sides again delivered sharp attacks. Defense lawyer Sasha Wass accused Depp and his lawyers of using “old-fashioned methods to discredit women”. They would have portrayed Heard as a “gold digger and adulterer” whom Depp had only married to become better known. Depp was “a hopeless addict who repeatedly lost his self-control and ability to contain his anger.” Depp's lawyer David Sherborne, however, described Amber Heard as a “compulsive liar”.
As in the beginning of the negotiations, the US actress Heard had previously entered the London High Court through the side entrance. She appeared in a black dress and on the hand of her new partner Bianca Butti. According to the reports, no fans with teddy bears and flowers were waiting for them.
How the expected judgment will turn out is still uncertain. The only thing that is certain is that another trial will follow in the USA, where Depp directly accused his ex-wife after reporting on her experiences of violence in an article in the “Washington Post” – but without mentioning Depp's name.