Fighting lawsuits on both sides of the country, Johnny Depp has upped the ante in his $50 million defamation case against Amber Heard by slagging off the injuries the Aquaman star says she suffered at his hands during their marriage as “painted-on bruises.”
The statement from Depp came came in a declaration the Pirates of the Caribbean star made recently in Virginia state court, where he filed the big-bucks lawsuit in early March. In fact, the Oscar nominee took it even further and alleged that in truth he was the subject of abuse from Heard, not the other way around.
“I never abused Ms. Heard or any other woman,” Depp said in the court document. “She was the perpetrator, and I was the victim.”
“While mixing prescription amphetamines and non-prescription drugs with alcohol, Ms. Heard committed innumerable acts of domestic violence against me, often in the presence of a third-party witness, which in some instances caused me serious bodily harm,” the actor added.
Heard and Depp permanently went their separate ways in 2016 after the former had a temporary restraining order against the latter and they came to a $7 million settlement, which Heard donated to charity. The increasingly litigious Hollywood Vampires guitarist spawned this lawsuit after Heard penned an anti-domestic abuse op-ed for the Washington Post last December. Though Depp was never actually mentioned by name, he claims that the article was untrue and hurt his prospects for new acting gigs, including a floated Pirates reboot.
“I have denied Ms. Heard’s allegations vehemently since she first made them in May 2016 when she walked into court to obtain a temporary restraining order with painted-on bruises that witnesses and surveillance footage show she did not possess each day of the preceding week,” Depp also said. “I will continue to deny them for the rest of my life.”
Whatever anyone will be denying or not, Depp’s declaration of the events of the night of May 21, 2016 do seem a little out of sync, to put it politely. Under oath, the actor says, “LAPD logs show that 911 was not called “until 10:07, 1 hour and 38 minutes after I departed the Eastern Columbia Building. Amber Heard’s and her friend iO Tillett Wright’s sworn 911 call testimony, like the rest of their testimony and hoax, was simply a lie.”
Yet, the police log itself shows the apparent initial call about an incident at the couple’s DTLA apartment was actually made at 8:30 PM that West Coast night. Depp’s main lawyer Adam Waldman did not respond to requests from Deadline for clarification.
On the other hand, Heard’s lawyer is flipping the focus back onto Depp with increasingly more unceremonious terms.
“The evidence in this case is clear: Johnny Depp repeatedly beat Amber Heard,” said Eric M. George in a statement.
“The increasingly desperate attempts by Mr. Depp and his enablers to revive his career by initiating baseless litigation against so many people once close to him – his former lawyers, former managers, and his former spouse – are not fooling anyone, the Browne George Ross LLP partner said of the case Heard has already sought to have dismissed. “In light of the important work done by the #TimesUp movement highlighting the tactics abusers use to continue to traumatize survivors, neither the creative community nor the public will be gaslit by Mr. Depp’s baseless blame-the-victim conspiracy theories.”
This latest turn in a matter that has been public fodder since Depp and Heard’s domestic showdown three years ago, comes as the Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes Of Grindelwald star looks to be back court yet again, this time thanks to a new round of former attorneys.
In a form of legal irony, the now pink slipped Buckley LLP lawyers who landed a near TKO last year for Depp in his on-going fight with his now retiring former attorney of 20 years Jacob Bloom over profits from the actor’s lucrative career, are coming after the actor for fees that they say they are owned.
In a filing yesterday, Fredrick Levin, Michael Rome and Ali Abugheida say Depp hasn’t paid the $347,979.89 remaining on his already 10% discounted $535,697.28 bill. The trio says their firm was promised the cash by last week after having been kicked to the curb in January by Depp, who is supposedly trying to cut his expenses.
Maybe that mater and the Heard case will be resolved before Depp’s $30 million battle with Bloom Hergott Diemer Rosenthal LaViolette Feldman Schenkman & Goodman LLP goes to trial either this fall or next spring – or not.