Amber Heard has been given another setback in her ongoing trial. Presently, Heard is the defendant in a lawsuit filed by her ex-husband Johnny Depp. He alleges that Heard wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post in 2018 that falsely described herself as a domestic abuse survivor, subsequently tarnishing his career in a major way. Depp wants $ 50 million in damages, though Heard counter-sued for $ 100 million, insisting that her allegations are true and she’s the one being defamed.
It has not been a pleasant trial, especially for Heard, whose public reputation has been heavily affected by the televised proceedings. Her latest move was an attempt to have the case tossed entirely, but the request was not granted. Per Deadlineher legal team’s bid to have the case dismissed was rejected by Judge Penny Azcarate, who said that there is “sufficient evidence” that’s been presented thus far to keep the case ongoing.
Reportedly, attorneys on both sides presented oral arguments for and against dropping the case. Ultimately, Azcarate declared that as long as there is a “scintilla of evidence” for the jury to consider, then continuing the trial is warranted. The judge added that there was “evidence that jurors could weigh that the statements were about the plaintiff, that the statements were published and that the statement was false, and that the defendant made the statement knowing it to be false or that the defendant made it so recklessly as to amount to willful disregard for the truth. The weight of that evidence is up to the fact finders. ”
Johnny Depp Appears to Be Winning in the Court of Public Opinion
A jury will decide who ultimately wins the defamation trial. One look at any comments section for an article about the Amber Heard vs. The Johnny Depp case, however, seems to indicate that the latter is coming out ahead. Millions of people appear to believe his story that he was in fact abused by Heard, both physically and verbally, in contrast to her allegations that he was her abuser. Audio recordings and witness testimony have helped to sway public opinion in Depp’s favor.
Heard’s reputation has clearly taken a hit as well. It’s clear how many people are not on her side going by the popular petition to have her removed from the upcoming superhero sequel Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. That petition has now surpassed 3.3 million signatures and is still growing rapidly with each passing day. There are rumors that Warner Bros. may be heavily reducing Heard’s screen time in the film as a result.
The issue for Depp is that this case is not exactly about determining whether or not he had been abused by Heard. He is suing her for defamation with specific regard to the 2018 op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post. Heard did not name Depp in the article, but the actor said the connection was clear based on allegations she had made in 2016. In her defense, Heard’s lawyers have been highlighting Depp’s struggles with drugs and alcohol, perhaps to argue that Depp had already tarnished his own image before the op-ed was published.
In any case, the trial will continue, so this will be up to the jury to figure it all out in the end.
Exclusive: Theo Rossi Talks Character-Driven Horror-Thriller Escape the Field
About The Author