In a world so consumed by the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s so hard to hear about anything else in the news. Amidst all the madness, though, one of Hollywood’s biggest legal battles is still going strong with new updates happening all the time: Johnny Depp and Amber Heard.
The pair met in 2009 on set of a movie. Then, they started dating in 2012 after Depp separated with his long time girlfriend. They eventually married in 2014. They once faced an international legal scandal for sneaking a dog on a plane, but have since divorced. Now, they are currently in a defamation suit full of physical assault, infidelity and mental damage to name a few.
Personally, I can’t believe that the court is sweeping such serious accusations under the rug, especially in a time when everyone openly shares abuse stories. What’s more, this has been going on for years and just got even more twisted if that was even possible.
Here’s a timeline of what’s happening between exes Johnny Depp and Amber Heard.
May 2016 – The Divorce & Restraining Order
Heard filed for divorce on May 23, 2016, two days after Depp’s mother passed away and 15 months after they married. In the paperwork, Heard cited “irreconcilable differences.” She was seeking a huge settlement in addition to spousal support. She also filed a temporary restraining order after she submitted a photo showing multiple bruises allegedly caused by Depp. Many jobs dropped him as a result, and Depp faced extreme backlash for his alleged actions. However, Heard retracted her statement a day before their hearing and all charges dropped off.
May 2016 – The Ex-Files
Depp’s ex of 14 years, Vanessa Paradis, fiercely came to his defense in an open letter through the Inquisitor. In the statement, Paradis defends the father of her children with, “He is a sensitive, loving and loved person, and I believe with all my heart that these recent allegations being made are outrageous.”
His daughter, Lily-Rose, also spoke out to defend her dad.
August 2016 – They’re Finally Free… Or So We Thought
They then reached a $7 million divorce settlement, where Depp had to pay Heard. Amber donated all the money she received to the American Civil Liberties Union and the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.
October 2018 – Depp Reflects, Heard Denies
In an interview with British GQ, he emotionally addressed the allegations made towards him during his divorce proceedings. “The thing that hurt me is being presented as something that you’re really as far away from as you could possibly get, you know?”
No other mention of the divorce appeared in the interview.
Heard’s legal team responded immediately saying, “Mr. Depp is shamefully continuing his psychological abuse of Ms. Heard, who has attempted to put a very painful part of her life firmly in her past. One need only look at the physical evidence to draw the proper conclusion.”
December 2018 – Amber Heard Publishes An Op-Ed On Domestic Violence
We heard no news after the couple finalized their divorce… that is until The Washington Post published Amber Heard’s Op Ed titled “I Spoke Up Against Sexual Violence – And Faced Our Culture’s Wrath. That Has To Change.”
Although she never mentioned Depp by name, the stories she shared sounded very similar to her case against Depp. Heard claimed that her abuser assaulted her by a hand and threatened her with death.
The public voiced their support for Heard and disgust towards Depp as a result of her publication. She then received more acting roles while more producers released Depp from even more gigs, including his wildly successful Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. At that point, we all felt like this whole ordeal ruined Depp’s career and tarnished his name.
March 2019 – Depp Files Defamation Suit Against Heard
As a result of the Op-Ed, Depp and his legal team filed a $50 million defamation lawsuit against Heard. They argued against the “categorically false” claims Heard made. The lawsuit also suggested that Heard was the aggressor in the relationship and abused him. This is when fans began switching sides from #TeamAmber to #TeamJohnny. Although many believed it was a publicity stunt to salvage his dying career.
April 2019 – Depp’s Attorney Provides Facts
Depp’s attorney Adam Waldman told The Blast they had numerous eye witnesses in addition to video and photographic evidence to prove Heard faked her injuries. Depp also claimed Heard wrote the Op-Ed to “generate positive publicity for Ms. Heard and advance her career, as her film Aquaman released just three days after the Post published her piece. Was it all to promote the movie and her career?
April 2019 – Heard Fights Back
A week later Heard filed a motion to dismiss the complaint, stating that Depp became violent on numerous occasions during their relationship. The motion provided examples of abuse by Depp-who she referred to as “The Monster” when he would act that way.
May 2019 – Depp Teases The Truth
As a response to her motion, Depp’s legal team filed an opposition to Heard’s motion. In it, they argued that Heard had made up the allegations and “painted-on” bruises. Depp continued to hold his stance that she abused him throughout their relationship. In a weird way it was like he was quietly creating build up to a huge revelation. Fans were still supporting Amber, while few believed Depp’s claims.
July 2019 – Welcome To The Media Circus, James Franco
Depp’s legal team subpoenaed James Franco after a 2016 surveillance video spotted him alongside Heard after she reportedly got into a fight with Depp. Franco reportedly lived in the same apartment complex as Depp and Heard at the time of the incident. This means he could confirm or deny if her face appeared damaged.
In the footage shown, Amber leads Franco under the camera and appears to kiss him. Franco responded by requesting to provide a sealed deposition instead of providing a testimony if the suit goes to trial. The legal team supposedly subpoenaed another famous “friend” of Heard’s. However, his identity remained unnamed at this time (but keep reading).
January 2020 – The Jaw Dropping Audio Proof & #JusticeForJohnnyDepp
Someone leaked audio from a 2015 therapy session between the two online. Both parties acknowledged their anger issues and mentioned their desire to end to physical violence. In one snippet Heard confessed to hitting Depp during their relationship. To save the gory details, Heard confessed that she hit Depp with pots, pans, vases, other objects within her reach, and her hands. “I can’t promise you I won’t get physical again. God I f**king sometimes get so mad I lose it.”
Other snippets revealed that Heard downplayed the physical assault she performed on him by telling him “you’re fine” and other gaslighting terms.
Then more audio clips from an argument leaked. In the clip, you can hear Heard taunting Depp and sounding extremely angry and almost under the influence. “You’re such a baby, grow the f**k up, Johnny.” You can also hear him calmly asking her to stop as slapping noises are followed. Many believe that there are more audio clips that Depp will use when they go to trial.
Around the same time pictures surfaced of Depp with bruises to his face and a mangled finger as a result of a fight they had one month into their marriage. The pictures were allegedly part of Depp’s defamation suit, but someone leaked them online.
Twitter went into a frenzy receiving proof that their beloved Johnny wasn’t a monster like people made him seem to be and had #JusticeForJohnnyDepp trending for hours. It appeared that Heard’s supporters had abandoned ship once her claims seemed fabricated amid the proof Johnny provided. Many called Heard a liar after she clearly confessed to hitting him in the audio clip since she can’t deny it now.
February 2020 – Depp’s Stacked Support Squad
A number of Depp’s ex girlfriends and frequent work collaborators will come to his defense in his upcoming trial. His ex girlfriend Vanessa Paradis and frequent collaborator Penelope Cruz have agreed to come to testify, as well as his ex fiance and co-star Winona Ryder. Winona, who has always spoken highly of her former flame, has even publicly defended her ex by sharing her views. “I don’t want to call anyone a liar, but from my experience of Johnny, it is impossible to believe such horrific allegations are true.” Looks like Winona just did, similarly to a majority of Twitter users.
March 2020 – Amber Had An Affair & He’s Being Dragged To Trial, Too
On March 26th, surveillance video surfaced of Heard cuddling up to Elon Musk in Johnny Depp’s private penthouse elevator. The footage does suggest flirtation and slightly inappropriate behavior coming from a married woman. Depp has voiced his belief numerous times that she had an affair a month into their marriage. Shortly after they separated Heard began dating Musk. Sources also confirmed that Depp subpoenaed Musk in 2016 for any communication he exchanged with Heard that mentioned alleged violence. At the time, Musk’s ability to serve as a witness seemed like just a rumor and was never confirmed.
April 2020 – Call In The Private Investigator
Overnight, news broke that Heard hired a notorious private investigator to spy on Depp. Former porn star-turned Hollywood “fixer” Paul Barresi says Heard’s legal team hired him last summer in hopes to find fellow victims of Depp. However, it didn’t go as she planned, because Barresi claims after interviewing hundreds of people across the world he couldn’t find one person who had a bad thing to say about him. “I couldn’t find one instance, or at least an admitted one, where he was physically abusive to a woman, smacked or beaten around, he’s like an angel. Not one who said a deprecating thing.”
However, a spokesperson for Heard said, “Mr. Barresi hasn’t been involved with Ms. Heard’s team since he was let go last year, and his account is entirely inconsistent with the testimony of multiple witnesses.” So that leaves his findings as potentially not helpful in the case, but still could be telling about what’s happening behind closed doors.
The lawsuit is still open, and the trial will continue sometime in August 2020.
Regardless of what actually happened, it’s beyond shocking how under the radar this case has been in the media considering how high profile these actors are and how serious the accusations are, especially with the #MeToo movement still going strong.
Personally, I choose to believe everybody is innocent until proven guilty. However, based on evidence from both parties, I really believe that Amber Heard physically abused Johnny Depp and wants to hide it all to protect her career. I think Depp verbally abused Heard, but I don’t think he ever physically assaulted her as she continually claims.
I find it disgusting and shocking that Heard, who is an ambassador for women’s rights and is an outspoken domestic violence advocate, would even attempt to change the narrative to make herself seem like a victim when she’s admitted to getting physically abusive to her loved one. It is also telling that she chose to make major claims against him when she had a major career move approaching. It’s as though she’s using him to ruin his career and enhance her own, plus benefit from the publicity even if it makes her look bad-which it didn’t before.
Sure, when it comes to celebrities it’s all a matter of opinion, and at first I agree that she brought solid “facts” to support her claims. But the more that comes out makes it seem like she’s altering the truth for her gain-and if it doesn’t go in her favour she won’t have much of a career left. Or at least, I would hope she’s blacklisted from Hollywood for her actions.
Sadly I don’t think this is the end of the drama between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard. In fact, I think more allegations and evidence will be made public before their August trial begins. But until then, we’ll keep you updated.
Feature Image via Pexels