Overview of Johnny Depp – Amber Heard’s million dollar lawsuit that shocked America

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard expose the nightmare marriage hidden behind the romance once admired in Hollywood.

Overview of Johnny Depp - Amber Heard's million dollar lawsuit that shocked America

Johnny Depp officially won the lawsuit against his ex-wife Amber Heard. Photo: AFP.

In the early morning of June 2 (Vietnam time), Johnny Depp was declared victorious by the court in a multi-million dollar lawsuit with his ex-wife Amber Heard.

Below is a detailed overview of the legal problems of Hollywood’s top power couple.

2012: Started dating

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard met on the set of the movie “The Rum Diary”.

Depp broke up with Vanessa Paradis, his partner of 14 years and has 2 children, to get to know Heard. The female star stated in her application to the court that their relationship began around 2011-2012.

Depp and Heard were once a very admired couple. Photo: AFP.

Depp and Heard were once a very admired couple. Photo: AFP.

Early 2013: First assault charge

Depp allegedly committed physical violence against Heard for the first time.

Heard said the actor slapped her three times after she joked about a tattoo on his arm. The tattoo is the word “Wino Forever”, a variation of the phrase “Winona Forever”, a celebration of Depp’s relationship with actress Winona Ryder. Johnny denies all allegations.

2014: Engagement; second assault

Amber Heard was spotted wearing an engagement ring. She shared on Daily Mail about her wedding plans.

Also that year, Heard claimed to have been assaulted by Depp on a private plane flying from Boston to Los Angeles while drunk. Depp denied and said he only had a glass of champagne before the flight.

2015: Married; scuffle

Depp and Heard married in a private ceremony in Los Angeles in February.

The couple took a trip to Australia in March. Heard described it as “three days of hostages”, accusing Depp of abusing her through heavy drinking and drugs.

Depp again denied the allegations and said that Heard lost her temper after the conversation about a postnuptial agreement. During the argument, Depp said the tip of his finger was cut off when Heard threw a bottle of vodka at him.

Depp added that he lied about the incident at the time to protect Heard.

Depp and Heard argued legally for a long time. Photo: AFP.

Depp and Heard argued legally for a long time. Photo: AFP.

2016: Separation

Heard called her friends and pretended she was being beaten by Depp. Depp took the stand and testified that Heard told friends on the phone, “Stop hitting me, Johnny!” even though he was just standing near her.

In May, the couple separated. Heard filed for dissolution of the marriage as well as for a restraining order to prevent Depp from contacting her.

Heard filed for divorce from Depp also in 2016, accusing her husband of physically abusing her while drunk and using banned substances. Los Angeles police investigated but could not find evidence of Depp’s crime.

2017: Divorce

The couple officially divorced in January.

Heard announced she was donating the $7 million she received after her divorce to charity.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the two even signed a non-speaking clause, preventing them from gossiping about their marriage and divorce.

2018: The Sun,  Washington Post  start a new war

An article by The Sun editor Dan Wootton was published in April, targeting Depp and describing him as an abusive, wife-beater right in the headline.

The actor filed a lawsuit against News Group Newspapers (NGN) – owner of The Sun newspaper. He lost this case in 2020. The UK Court of Appeal refused Depp’s appeal against the Supreme Court’s decision.

Also in December 2018, Heard gave an interview to the Washington Post, mentioning her personal experiences with domestic violence.

The article was titled: “I spoke out against sexual violence – and faced down my culture’s prejudices. That has to change,” but did not mention Depp by name.

2019: $50 million lawsuit

Depp launched a $50m (£38m) defamation lawsuit against Heard. His lawyers said that the above articles were untrue.

Depp asserted that the article caused him to be kicked out of the “Pirates of the Caribbean” film series and that it was Heard who abused him.

Depp accused his ex-wife of impersonating the victim and fabricating the truth. Photo: AFP.

Depp accused his ex-wife of impersonating the victim and fabricating false facts. Photo: AFP.

2022: End of lawsuit

Depp’s 2019 defamation lawsuit against Heard was delayed due to the pandemic. On April 11, the trial opened at Fairfax County Court, Virginia.

Over the course of six weeks, jurors heard testimony from family members, friends, co-workers, employees as well as testimony from Depp and Heard. Both claimed they were victims.

On June 1, a jury found in favor of Depp and declared Heard’s 2018 Washington Post article defamatory.

The court awarded Depp $10 million (£8 million) in damages and $5 million (£4 million) in punitive damages.

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