Johnny Depp Joked About Punching Amber Heard, Mutual Friend Testifies

Johnny Depp Joked About Punching Amber Heard, Mutual Friend Testifies
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In videotaped testimony played before a Virginia courtroom Tuesday, a former mutual friend of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard described the actor making a comment about spousal abuse directly after the pair’s seaside Caribbean wedding.

“As we were walking back from the ceremony ... I was walking with Johnny and congratulating him that they pulled it off, that they did it,” iO Tillett Wright said in the footage, dated March 10. “And then he said, ‘We’re married; now I can punch her in the face and nobody can do anything about it.’”

The revelation about Depp’s apparent joke came as his $50 million defamation suit against Heard, which centers on his ex-wife’s domestic violence allegations, stretched into its seventeenth day.

Depp and Heard threw a wedding party for friends and family on Depp’s private island in February 2015, beginning a marriage that quickly fell apart.

Wright, a multi-hyphenate producer, became friends with Heard and later Depp while he was working as a photographer for The New York Times around a decade ago, he said, describing himself as a onetime confidante for each actor.

He described a toxic relationship in which Depp would regularly demean Heard, dismissing her career as being solely based off her looks, and Heard would verbally retaliate.

Wright was clear that he had never seen Depp hit Heard. But he said he witnessed some of the apparent aftereffects, such as a clump of blond hair on the carpet, allegedly torn out by Depp during a fight. He also said that he saw Depp throw “glasses and dishware” at Heard, “which I would characterize as violent,” Wright said.

Depp maintains that he never physically harmed Heard or any other woman. In response, Heard is countersuing him to the tune of $100 million.

The couple’s divorce was finalized in January 2017. In 2020, after Depp’s former attorney Adam Waldman began attacking Heard’s domestic violence allegations as a “hoax,” Wright said that he saw Heard “retreat.”

“Amber became isolated, embattled and extraordinarily distressed,” he said.

Heard had testified about Depp’s team’s attacks on her credibility earlier in the day as Depp attorney Camille Vasquez completed her cross-examination.

Heard, like Depp, testified over the course of four days in total.

“Just look me up. You’ll see,” she said after Vasquez accused her of having no evidence that Depp’s team carried out what Heard called an “orchestrated smear campaign” against her.

Over the course of the defamation trial, Depp’s supporters have certainly been the louder bunch, with fans showing up outside the courtroom to cheer the “Pirates of the Caribbean” star as he arrives every day since proceedings began back in April.

While the suit is objectively complex in reality, that is not the case on social media, where Johnny Depp is painted as a victim of venomous lies peddled by someone less famous than him. Popular hashtags include #AmberHeardIsALiar and #AmberTurd, a reference to the part of Depp’s testimony where he said he said Heard defecated on his side of their bed to get back at him. (Heard blamed the couple’s aging dogs.) Countless moments from the trial, which has been streamed live, have provided days upon days of mineable content and memes.

In her testimony, Heard suggested that a campaign against her predates the current trial by years, alleging that one of Depp’s lawyers had a connection to TMZ and fed the celebrity news and gossip site information to make her look bad ― including the audio recording in which Heard admits to hitting Depp and telling him that he was “fine.”

Her time on the stand came to an end after a prolonged battle between Elaine Bredehoft, one of Heard’s attorneys, and Vasquez, who interrupted with near-continuous objections to Bredehoft’s questioning, necessitating several exasperated sidebars with the judge.

Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.