Depp, who is suing Heard for $ 50 million, has said the statement – published two years after Heard filed for divorce and accused him of physical abuse, which he has repeatedly denied – caused further damage and irreparably ruined his career. Rottenborn read headline after headline published before 2018, arguing that Depp already had a negative reputation: “Apparently drunk Johnny Depp cut off at the Hollywood Film Awards.” “Johnny Depp: Friends and family are seriously worried about him. Here’s why.” “Johnny Depp has a ‘clear and epic’ sense of entitlement, say former leaders.”
When he read one from May 2017 (“Johnny Depp reportedly drank a lot and was constantly delayed on the new ‘Pirates’ movie set”), the actor became visibly annoyed.
“Reportedly. These are all hit pieces, they’re naughty, sir. This is a pathetic attempt, “Depp said.
“Mr. Depp, please answer the question I ask you,” said Rottenborn, who later clarified – and reminded the jury – that the actor is specifically suing Heard for op-ed.
Rottenborn played audio recordings of the couples’ intense quarrels. He pressed Depp on some of his other profane text messages, and also the wording of a text to his doctor saying “I cut my middle finger off” when Depp previously said Heard threw a vodka bottle and sliced it off – much-discussed damage that happened in Australia during the filming of the fifth “Pirates of the Caribbean” movie in 2015. Depp maintained that the way the text is worded does not mean that it is literally what skete; he asked why he would have wanted to hurt his finger when playing the guitar is the only thing that brings him peace.
Rottenborn returned to points he had made earlier, asking Depp to confirm that Heard’s op-ed did not mention him by name, noting that he was suing Heard, not The Post. “She was the one who came up with the statements,” Depp replied.
Depp returned to the booth afterwards for a redirection with one of his lawyers, Jessica Meyers, who reread several texts and played audio clips, asking the actor to provide more context. She brought one that has perhaps received the most attention, his vulgar exchange of words in 2013 with actor Paul Bettany, in which Depp wrote “Let’s burn Amber !!!” and referred to her “burnt corpse.”
The actor, who testified last week that he regretted using such language, said he and Bettany were originally attached to their sense of humor; these texts were a reference to a “Monty Python” sketch about burning witches. “It’s just irreverent and abstract humor,” he said, adding that Heard and Bettany had never gotten together and that Heard once reduced Bettany’s 18-year-old son to tears during a debate.
Meyers asked about “The Monster,” a term that has reappeared repeatedly, as Heard said, describing Depp at its worst; Depp has said that Heard invented it, and for him it refers to his struggle to remain sober. In several audio clips of their arguments, Depp said he wanted to leave because he needed space, and Heard began to cry, saying he was causing her so much stress.
Depp reiterated that he had never hit Heard, saying that at the end of their relationship, he felt “broken” and could not stand it anymore. At the end of the redirect, Meyers played an audio clip of a conversation that took place after Heard filed for divorce and a restraining order in May 2016.
In the clip, Heard said she did not know “how to get my reputation back”, and Depp suggested writing a joint letter saying they would take their issues out of the public eye and blame the media for creating such a “hateful storm “, but that they loved each other and wanted to make sure they were both okay. Depp added that they have to deal with the “abuse thing” and asked Heard why she put it out there, and the actress said his team forced her by “violating.”
Heard said the last time it got “crazy” between the two, “I really thought I was going to lose my life, and I thought you were going to do it by accident.” Depp replied that he had “lost a finger” and Heard had thrown a can of mineral spirits on the nose of him. Heard said, “Tell the world, tell them … I, Johnny Depp, man, I’m also a victim of domestic violence.” “Yes,” Depp replied.
There was yet another crowd in the courtroom, which has been filled with spectators – many of them Depp fans – since the trial started two weeks ago. Judge Penney Azcarate seemed to finally lose patience as there was loud laughter after Depp said he typically did not watch his own films. “Order in court, or I’ll get you removed. Understood?” Azcarate told the crowd.
The trial is taking place in Virginia because The Post’s printing press and online servers are in Fairfax County. After Depp’s attorney called Heard’s allegations a “hoax,” Heard sued Depp for $ 100 million.