Things are really heating up in the Johnny Depp-Amber Heard defamation trial currently going on in a Virginia courtroom (which you can also livestream). Johnny gave his testimony Tuesday and was cross-examined by Amber Heard's legal team on Wednesday.
Tuesday, the What's Eating Gilbert Grape star took the stand for the first time in this case where he claims that ex-wife Amber’s 2018 Washington Post op-ed (where she called herself a survivor of domestic abuse without naming Johnny) defamed him and resulted in a hit against his career (he was dropped from the Fantastic Beasts franchise and his role as Grindelwald was recast).
During his testimony, Johnny maintained that he has never struck a woman in his life, despite claims to the contrary.
"Never did I myself reach the point of striking Ms. Heard in any way, nor have I ever struck any woman in my life," Depp declared on the stand.
"Since I knew there was no truth to it whatsoever, I felt it my responsibility to stand up not only for myself in that instance but stand up for my children, who at the time were 14 and 16," he continued. "My goal is the truth," he declared.
Depp went on to add that he hoped to "clear the record" of the allegations.
"It's been six years of trying times," he added, and then remarked on the negative impact this ongoing case has had on his acting and movie career. "It's pretty strange when one day you're Cinderella, so to speak, then 0.6 seconds, you're Quasimodo. I didn't deserve that, nor did my children, nor did the people who have believed in me for all these years. I didn't want any of those people to believe that I had done them wrong or lied to them or that I was a fraud. I pride myself on honesty."
Johnny’s testimony also included what made him initially fall in love with Amber
“From what I recall, what I remember, she was too good to be true," he testified. "She was attentive, she was loving, she was smart, she was kind, she was funny, she was understanding. We had many things in common," he said.
The couple first met in 2011 while filming Rum Diary. It was in 2015 that they tied the knot but very quickly, by 2016, Amber filed for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences. She also filed for a restraining order against her estranged husband, alleging that Johnny had been both verbally and physically abusive to her. Three months later, they reached a divorce agreement, so Amber dropped the restraining order.
In her 2018 Washington Post op-ed, she wrote, "I had the rare vantage point of seeing, in real-time, how institutions protect men accused of abuse," she said, however nowhere in the piece does she name the Edward Scissorhands star. Shortly after, Johnny filed the $50 million defamation lawsuit. Amber has countersued for $100 million for nuisance.
One of the stranger aspects of his testimony includes his allegation that Amber, or one of her friends, pooped in their bed. On April 22, 2016, Amber celebrated her 30th birthday party but Johnny refused to attend. She alleges that he threw a Magnum bottle at her head. The next day, he says the maid contacted him to let him know that someone had defecated on his side of the bed. Amber insists it was one of their Yorkshire Terriers (you know, the ones that got them in trouble with the Australian government). But Johnny says the mess was too big for the dogs and had to be the handiwork (is that the word?) of either Amber or her friends.
The court heard that Johnny sent his good friend, actor Paul Bettany, a series of texts where he threatens to assault, defile, and kill Amber. Johnny testified that he was “ashamed” of those texts but that he didn’t mean what he wrote.
“I am ashamed of some of the references made and embarrassed at the tone that in the heat of the moment, the heat of the pain I was feeling, went to dark places,” he testified. “Sometimes pain has to be dealt with humour, and sometimes dark very dark humour, sometimes you are exaggerating something you’ve done to make him understand you are on Planet Question Mark.”
He then went on to blame Amber for his disturbing text messages saying, “After the unfortunate words of Ms. Heard made their way into my heart and my head and those are two very opposing things – and you are trying to find to the best way to express sometime to a friend.”
His testimony went into detail about the domestic abuse he witnessed as a child at the hands of his mother, Betty Sue Palmer.
“The things that I witnessed … there were a couple of times when it got too far when I could see his eyes welling up as he was staring at her, saying nothing," he recounted of the fights between his mother and father. "The most he would do is he would punch a wall. I once saw him punch a wall and he shattered his hand because it wasn't drywall, it was proper concrete … but still, never touched her, never argued with her. He remained a gentleman."
"To me, as a 5-year-old boy, I kept wondering, why does he take it? How does he take this? And why doesn't he leave her? But he didn't," he continued. "He was able to maintain his calm, and his composure. He was able to maintain his relationship with his children... He is a good man."
He added, “The verbal abuse, the psychological abuse, was almost worse than the beatings. The beatings were just physical pain. The physical pain, you learn to deal with. You learn to accept it. You learn to deal with it.”
In the cross-examination, Johnny described the alleged 2015 incident where he says Amber smashed a vodka bottle on his hand, severing the tip. He said she became angry when she saw him drinking after months of sobriety and got violent.
"She walked up to me, she reached and grabbed the bottle of vodka... and then just kind of stood back and hurled it at me," he said, miming the throw.
"And it just went right past my head and smashed behind me. So I stood up and walked behind the bar, and there was a larger bottle of vodka, the kind with the handle, you know?" He says she "flung insults left, right, and center" as he poured himself another drink.
"And she then grabbed that bottle, and threw that at me. And it made contact and shattered everywhere." He indicated where it hit his hand.
"I honestly didn't feel the pain at first, at all. I felt no pain whatsoever. What I felt was heat... I felt heat, and as if something were dripping down my hand."
"And then I looked down and realized that the tip of my finger had been severed. I was looking directly at my bones sticking out. And the... meaty portion of the inside of your finger."
"Blood was just pouring out. And at that point, I think that I went into some sort of... I don't know what a nervous breakdown feels like, but that's probably the closest I've ever been."
"Nothing made sense. And I knew in my mind and in my heart... this is not life. This is not life. No one should have to go through this."
He went on to explain that he lied to doctors at the time -- saying he got his finger stuck in accordion doors -- to protect Amber but he "didn't want to see her again."
After being shown photos of himself from the emergency room during the cross-examination, Depp said that he recalled another detail that he had left out in his testimony. He alleges that Amber snubbed out a lit cigarette on his cheek moments after his fingertip was taken off.