Johnny Depp again denied on Wednesday that he had been violent toward his ex-wife, Amber Heard, calling her testimony in the ongoing defamation case “insane” and “horrible.”
Depp’s lawyers called him to the stand to respond to a variety of matters that had come up over the six-week trial, as they continued to present their rebuttal witnesses. Depp first testified over the course of four days in April. Closing arguments are scheduled for Friday.
Depp is suing Heard for alluding to her domestic violence allegations against him in an op-ed in 2018, while Heard is countersuing him over statements his lawyer made accusing her of perpetrating an “abuse hoax.” Each has accused the other of damaging their careers.
“It’s insane to hear heinous accusations of violence — sexual violence — that she’s attributed to me,” Depp testified. “Horrible, ridiculous, humiliating, ludicrous, painful, savage, unimaginably brutal, cruel, and all false. All false… No human being is perfect — certainly not — none of us. But I have never in my life committed sexual battery, physical abuse.”
Heard gave detailed and often emotional testimony earlier this month, in which she accused Depp of violence on numerous occasions. In one instance, she alleges that Depp penetrated her with a liquor bottle during a drug-fueled fight in Australia. She also testified that Depp had sexually assaulted her on other occasions, choked her, head-butted her, yanked out her hair and slapped her in the face. She also presented photos of bruises on her face and scratches on her arms, photos of damage to their apartment, as well as contemporaneous therapy notes referencing the alleged abuse.
Depp was asked by his lawyers to respond to several other things. His former business manager, Joel Mandel, had testified that Depp rarely gave money to charity and instead preferred to lend his name to charitable causes.
Depp called Mandel “a very bitter man,” and said he had sometimes made contributions without his name attached because, “I don’t need the adulation. I don’t need the attention.”
Depp also denied Heard’s claim that he had taken 8-10 MDMA pills before the Australia incident, saying he had only taken MDMA about six or seven times in his life and never in high enough quantities to feel the drug’s full effect. Asked what would happen if he took as many pills as Heard suggested, Depp said, “I think one would die, probably rather quickly.”
Depp was also asked whether he had helped get Heard cast in the role of Mera in “Justice League” and “Aquaman.” Heard had testified that she obtained the role on her own by auditioning. Depp said that after the auditions, Heard asked him to call some top Warner Bros. executives, including Kevin Tsujihara. Depp claimed to have “curbed their worries to some degree.”
Depp also testified that he never saw the statements made by his lawyer, Adam Waldman, until Heard filed her countersuit against him in August 2020.
Depp’s lawyer asked him how Heard’s allegations had affected him, when she first filed for a domestic violence restraining order in May 2016.
“It changed everything,” he said, drawing an objection from Heard’s lawyer.
“I don’t think anyone enjoys having to split themselves open and tell the truth, but there are times when one just simply has to because it’s gotten out of control,” Depp continued. “So this is not easy for any of us. I know that. But no matter what happens I did get here and I did tell the truth, and I have spoken up for what I’ve been carrying on my back, reluctantly, for six years.”
Heard’s attorney Ben Rottenborn cross-examined Depp after lunch, drawing his attention to various quotes, texts and photos.
In one such quote, Depp said, “I have a lot of love inside me and a lot of anger. If I’m angry and I’ve got to lash out or hit somebody, I’m going to do it, and I don’t care what the repercussions are.”
Rottenborn also showed Depp a text message in which he unleashed a string of obscene epithets in reference to Heard, and said she is “begging for total global humiliation.” In another text, Depp allegedly referred to another woman’s anatomy as “rightfully mine,” and said “I NEED I WANT I TAKE.”
Depp suggested that the text message had been doctored, or that someone else had sent the text from his phone.
“I don’t write like that,” he said. “I don’t have that kind of hubris or expectation.”
Rottenborn also suggested that Depp had tried to get Heard fired from “Aquaman” in June 2016. He pointed to a text from Depp to his sister, in which Depp wrote: “I want her replaced on that WB film!!!” He also asked if Depp had called Warner Bros. executives to urge that she be fired.
Depp denied that, but said later that he “felt responsibility for having gone to those people and, y’know, painted such a beautiful picture.” He also said that the studio could face a “dilemma” because Heard was appearing in “Aquaman” — which he initially misstated as “Aqua Net,” a hairspray brand — while he was starring in the company’s “Fantastic Beasts” franchise.
“I had given my word to them,” Depp said. “I felt responsible that I had to tell them exactly what was going on and it was going to end up ugly.”