Amber Heard denies Johnny Depp's claim she married him for money, fame: 'I hadn't seen his movies'

Taryn Ryder
·Writer, Yahoo Entertainment

Amber Heard answered questions for the second day in a row about her and Johnny Depp’s volatile relationship as the actor looked on in London’s High Court. The Aquaman star, 34, claimed she was the victim of verbal and physical abuse and insisted she was not the “instigator.” Tuesday marked the eleventh day of Depp’s libel trial against the Sun. The Pirates of the Caribbean star, 57, is suing the tabloid’s owner, News Group Newspapers, and its executive editor over a 2018 article that called him a “wife beater.”

“While these proceedings are not brought against me personally, they are directed at the veracity of my allegation of domestic violence,” Heard said in a witness statement, obtained by Yahoo Entertainment. “I am astounded that years after our divorce agreement was concluded, I continue to have to answer his continued harassment and bullying, and I continue to be blamed by him for a mess of his own making.” 

Depp and Heard met in 2009 filming The Rum Diary but didn’t start dating until 2011. They wed in Feb. 2015 — a night Heard said she “never felt more lonely in my life.” Depp previously testified that he believes Heard had an “agenda” in pursuing a relationship with him and that she was after fame and money.

“She was beautiful, seemingly incredibly interested in me and my work, and I fell for it,” Depp said in his witness statement. “She bombed me with what appeared to be love. It was not until much later that I understood that she had an agenda, namely to get married to me in order to progress her own career and/or to benefit financially, and she knew how to bring it about.”

Johnny Depp departs court on July 21, 2020 in London, England after hearing Amber Heard's testimony. (Photo: WireImage)
Johnny Depp departs court on July 21, 2020 in London, England after hearing Amber Heard's testimony. (Photo: WireImage)

Heard denied this, stating, “As for what Johnny says about my so-called ‘agenda’ in marrying him — for financial benefit or to somehow further my career — that is preposterous. I remained financially independent from him the whole time we were together and the entire amount of my divorce settlement was donated to charity. In fact, my desire to remain financially independent was one of the main sources of conflict during our relationship.”

The actress — who is 23 years younger than Depp — claimed she never even saw his movies.

“It is not true that I told him I admired his films early in our relationship (to contradict one of his examples). I was always very clear with him that I hadn’t seen his movies; it was something we joked about,” she added.

Heard denied Depp’s accusation that she regularly used drugs and drank excessively during their five-year relationship.

“Of course I drank more than him during the brief periods when he was sober. If he was sober, then to be respectful, I would usually check with him that it was OK for me to drink wine in front of him. He would say yes and often insisted on pouring my wine,” she alleged. “I am not a habitual drug user. During our relationship I would say that I could count the number of times I attempted to smoke marijuana on two hands. I don’t like it. I am not a personality that likes to be out of control. I did not take cocaine at all when I was with Johnny.”

Heard also claimed she never encouraged Depp to relapse, explaining, “My well-being and livelihood would be severely and negatively impacted by Johnny’s use. It was in my self-interest to advocate for and to support and protect his sobriety. To this end, I spent years trying to support him to get sober to help him and to save our relationship.”

The actress alleged that she was often abused when Depp was under the influence of drugs and alcohol. He claimed he was the one who suffered verbal and physical abuse and that Heard was the aggressor.

“Johnny has said I was continually verbally and physically assaulting him during our relationship — he paints a picture that I was somehow the instigator and abusive partner. That’s not true. It is true that I had to use my body and limbs to protect myself from Johnny’s violence and abuse,” she noted.

The Pineapple Express actress maintained in her witness statement and in court on Tuesday she had visible marks and bruises on her body after several of the alleged 14 instances of abuse. Heard said her former co-star, James Franco, questioned her about a facial injury after a May 2016 incident with Depp.

“On the topic of what you say about his (Depp’s) jealousy, you mentioned in your statement that James Franco was someone that Mr. Depp was accusing you of having an affair with and he was quite wrong about it,” Depp’s attorney, Eleanor Laws, asked the actress, according to the Press Association.

“That’s right,” Heard replied.

CCTV footage was shown of Heard and Franco in an elevator in the building where she and Depp lived on May 22, 2016 at around 11 p.m., days after she filed for divorce.

“Are you trying to avoid being seen by the camera there?” Laws asked.

“We were talking. He was saying to me ‘Oh my god, what happened to you?’ He saw my face… when I let him in. He saw my face and he said ‘what the f***?’” Heard claimed.

“That’s not secretive talking on that camera?” Laws asked.

“Yes, it’s discreet,” Heard said.

According to one of Heard’s witness statements, Depp was not only jealous of Franco, but of all male actors she filmed or auditioned with.

“He accused me of having affairs with each of my co-stars, movie after movie: Eddie Redmayne, James Franco, Jim Sturgess, Kevin Costner, Liam Hemsworth, Billy-Bob Thornton, Channing Tatum; even women co-stars like Kelly Garner,” Heard writes. “He also accused me of having affairs with stars I auditioned with, like Leonardo DiCaprio. He would taunt me about it — especially when he was drunk or high — and had derogatory nicknames for every one of my male co-stars he considered a sexual threat. For example, Leonardo DiCaprio was ‘pumpkin-head,’ Channing Tatum was ‘potato-head’ and ‘Jim Turd Sturgess.’”

Depp admitted to being jealous during their relationship and rightfully so, his lawyer claimed. Heard’s relationship with Elon Musk was brought up as Alejandro Romero, the concierge at Heard and Depp’s building, testified he saw the Tesla founder “a few times a week” late at night, and that Musk would “always visit when Mr. Depp was not at home” in 2015.

Heard maintained her and Musk’s relationship didn’t start until after she and Depp split in 2016. Text messages between her and Musk were read aloud in court from May 2016 when the entrepreneur offered the actress “24/7” security as she confided that she was about to seek a restraining order against Depp.

“The offer would stand, even if you never wanted to see me again… anyway, sorry for being an idiot. The radio silence hurts a lot. It only matters because I really like you,” Musk’s text to Heard said.

“Were you telling Mr. Depp about this?” Laws asked. “Time and again, you have accused [Depp] of being jealous, but we can see here you are in communication with someone.”

“I think all jealousy could be deemed illogical,” Heard replied.

In her written statement, Heard said it was “incredibly upsetting” to relive the abuse allegations.

“I am reminded again of how women who suffer domestic violence — and have historically tried to protect their abusive partners — have those attempts to protect their partners later weaponized against them: because we don’t say something about it earlier, others assume it must not be true,” she said. “It is incredibly upsetting for me to have to respond to the allegations he and his paid staff have now made against me in these proceedings, which were initiated by him, and in circumstances where our divorce agreement required me to drop all claims of abuse but our agreed public statement made clear I had not made a false accusation.”

When Depp and Heard settled their divorce in August 2016, they issued a seemingly amicable joint statement: “Our relationship was intensely passionate and at times volatile, but always bound by love," Depp and Heard said in a statement. Neither party has made false accusations for financial gains. There was never an intent of physical or emotional harm. Amber wishes the best for Johnny in the future.” 

Things soured in 2018 after Heard wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post about being an abuse survivor. Depp is suing the actress for $50 million for defamation in the U.S.

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