Texts between Paul Bettany and Johnny Depp were revealed during Depp's "wife beater" court trial.
In one text, Bettany said Depp should try a "drowning test" to see if Amber Heard was a witch.
"We live in a world without context," Bettany recently said of the texts' disclosure.
Paul Bettany said he was embarrassed when his text messages with Johnny Depp were released during Depp's court trial in the UK.
In November 2020, Depp lost a libel case against the publisher of the British tabloid The Sun over a 2018 headline that called him a "wife beater." Depp's former wife Amber Heard had accused him of physical abuse in 2016, and the two settled outside of court that year.
During the trial in 2020, texts that Depp and Bettany had exchanged in 2013 were read aloud.
In a series of texts, Depp wrote, "Let's burn Amber!!!" to which Bettany responded: "Having thought it through I don't think we should burn Amber — she's delightful company and easy on the eye, plus I'm not sure she's a witch. We could of course try the English course of action in these predicaments — we do a drowning test. Thoughts?"
Depp replied: "Let's drown her before we burn her!!! I will fuck her burnt corpse afterwards to make sure she's dead."
This week Bettany spoke with The Times of London about the texts ahead of the opening of his new play, "The Collaboration," an Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat biopic, in London.
"We live in a world without context," he said. "I didn't know Johnny when he was married to Amber. I knew him before. But we hadn't spoken for years. During the marriage, I didn't know them. So I wasn't around for any of that."
Bettany told the newspaper that the court trial was an "embarrassing" and "very surreal moment."
"I know how this works. Anything that you say is oxygen for a fire. And there's just no fucking fire," he added. "The only real way to deal with this elegantly is to say: I'm not sure there's anybody who has one of these devices that would feel comfortable having a team of lawyers scour their private text messages."
Bettany, who is best known for starring in several Marvel superhero films, recently spoke with The Independent about his texts with Depp being revealed.
"Can you imagine what it would be like, honestly, to have a bunch of lawyers go through every one of your emails and texts for 10 years?" he said. "All I can tell you is that it was an unpleasant feeling."
In a tweet in 2016, Bettany said: "Known Johnny Depp for years and through several relationships. He's the sweetest, kindest, gentlest man that I've ever known. Just saying."
Depp sued The Sun following the publication of a column in April 2018 written by the newspaper's executive editor, Dan Wootton, titled "Gone Potty: How can JK Rowling be 'genuinely happy' casting wife beater Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts film?"
In the ruling, Judge Andrew Nicol referred to 14 incidents that The Sun's lawyers had cited to justify referring to Depp as a "wife beater."
Depp had strenuously denied all claims that he was violent toward Heard. He's launched a $50 million case against Heard in the US over a column she wrote for The Washington Post describing experience with domestic violence.
While the column did not name Depp, his legal team has insisted that it is strongly inferred that it's about him.
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