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Johnny Depp trial live: Actor compares fight with Amber Heard to ‘Disco Bloodbath’

Johnny Depp reacts to photo Amber Heard took of him asleep with spilt ice cream

Lawyers representing Amber Heard cross-examined Johnny Depp for a full day on Thursday following his two days of testimony in his $50m (£38.2m) defamation lawsuit against his ex-wife.

The trial has now adjourned, and resumes on Monday for a third week at the Fairfax County Courthouse in Virginia.

Heard is being sued by Depp for implying he abused her in a 2018 op-ed. Although she did not name him, he claims her allegations have made it difficult for the actor to land movie roles, turning him from “Cinderella to Quasimodo” in Hollywood.

The actor has testified about a traumatic childhood with an abusive mother saying his relationship with Heard mirrored that, describing her as “bullying” him.

On Thursday, Heard’s lawyers challenged him over vulgar text messages he sent about her and his drug use and drinking.

His account of the severing of his finger in Australia was also disputed, and pictures of messages scrawled across mirrors in blood and paint were shown in court, as well as several secretly recorded arguments and fights.

The jury also saw messages between the pair in which Depp described one of their fights as a “Disco Bloodbath”.


Why is the trial being held in Virginia?

The explosive defamation trial between Depp and Heard is unfolding well outside their normal Hollywood orbit – at a court in Fairfax County, Virginia.

Depp’s suit against his ex-wife alleges that she defamed him in a December 2018 op-ed published in The Washington Post titled “I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change”.

The trial is taking place in Fairfax because the online edition of The Post is published via servers in the county, allowing Depp to sue her in that area.

According to the Associated Press, Heard’s attorneys tried to get the trial moved to California but Depp’s lawyers said one of the reasons they decided to sue in Virginia was because of the state’s anti-SLAPP legislation, which is not as wide-ranging as in California.

The Independent’s Gustaf Kilander explains:

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 19:40


Where did it all go wrong? Timeline of Depp and Heard’s relationship

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard are believed to have started dating that year, after Depp split from his longtime partner, French actor Vanessa Paradis. Depp and Paradis have two children: a daughter named Lily-Rose and a son named Jack.

The couple confirmed their engagement in March 2014 and tied the knot in February 2015.

By May 2016, Heard was filing for divorce.

Here’s everything you need to know about their doomed relationship:

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 19:10


​​RECAP: Why is Depp suing Heard?

If you’re just joining The Independent’s coverage of the trial opposing Johnny Depp and Amber Heard, here’s what you need to know:

Depp filed a lawsuit against his ex-wife Heard in March 2019, alleging that she defamed him in an op-ed she wrote in 2018 for The Washington Post.

The op-ed, which ran in December of that year, is titled: “I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change.”

Depp isn’t mentioned by name in the op-ed, but his legal team has argued that it contains a “clear implication that Mr Depp is a domestic abuser”, which it says is “categorically and demonstrably false”.

Clémence Michallon explains:

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 18:40


Depp draws a laugh with happy hour joke

Depp created several moments of levity over three days of testimony, including during cross-examination on Thursday.

The actor noted that he was struggling with sobriety in the spring of 2013, after which Heard’s attorney Ben Rottenborn asked: “You would sometimes drink whiskey during the morning at that time?”

“I mean, isn’t happy hour any time?” Depp replied, spurring a ripple of laughs in the gallery.

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 18:10


Depp reacts to photo of himself asleep with spilt ice cream

Heard’s lawyers placed an emphasis on his drug use throughout cross-examination as they tried to poke holes in his timeline of sobriety.

At one point, the court was shown an unflattering photo in which Depp is seen asleep on a couch with ice cream spilling down his lap.

Depp said the photo was taken by Heard after he had worked a 17-hour day and taken some opioids.

He said Heard gave him the ice cream “because she knew what was going to happen”.

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 17:40


Depp admits to ‘disgraceful and odious behaviour’ in notes to Heard

The jury learned that Depp and Heard used to write messages to each other in a journal on Thursday as her legal team presented examples in court.

In a message dated Sunday 27 September 2015, Mr Depp wrote, “I can’t express how sorry I am for having stooped so low … to have spewed such vicious untruths for the sole purpose of hurting you – I am far from being proud of myself for such a grievous error!!! Shameful…”

“I will never allow myself to resort to such disgraceful and odious behavior… No matter what!!!” he added.

The Independent’s Gustaf Kilander reports:

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 17:10


Heard cringes at audio of Depp telling her ‘I f**king hate you’

Heard cringed in court as a jury heard audio of Depp gagging and berating her during cross-examination on Thursday.

On the graphic recording, Depp could be heard saying to Heard: “You’re a c*** and I f***ing hate you and I want out.”

The court was also played a string of recordings of other fights between the couple.

In one Depp said: “I become irrational when you’re doing movies, I become jealous and f****** crazy and weird and we fight a lot more.”

The Independent’s Grame Massie reports:

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 16:40


Court hears audio of Depp moaning like a ‘pained animal’

During questioning about the 2014 flight from Boston to Los Angeles, Depp acknowledged that he had a bad reaction to mixing alcohol with opioids.

The court then heard three audio excerpts in which he seeminly moaned in pain.

“It sounds like a pained animal and it’s my voice,” Depp said in response to the audio.

In the last excerpt, his former security guard Jerry Judge can be heard saying, “I’m going to stay with this f***ing idiot in case he gets sick”.

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 16:10


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Megan Sheets22 April 2022 15:50


Depp says he feared Heard was having an affair with James Franco

Much of Thursday’s cross-examination centred around a May 2014 flight from Boston to Los Angeles, during which Heard and Depp had a fight.

Heard’s lawyers sought to portray jealousy as the catalyst of the fight, bringing up his frustration that Heard was at the time filming a movie with James Franco.

Depp confirmed he did fear that Heard and Franco were having an affair and said it was “highly likely” that they had a heated discussion about his suspicions.

The Independent’s Gustaf Kilander reports:

Megan Sheets22 April 2022 15:40


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