In a disturbingly detailed motion to dismiss filed on Thursday, Aquaman star Amber Heard is urging a Virginia judge to toss ex-husband Johnny Depp’s $50 million defamation lawsuit against her over a Washington Post op-ed.
Besides unveiling intimate items such as Depp once calling himself a “fucking savage” for his alleged abusive behavior towards her and threatening to “kill” the actress, the argument that Heard and her attorneys have put forward is that this matter should have been filed in California to begin with last month, if at all.
The logic in the dismissal motion is that Golden State is where the actors lived as a couple, live as individuals, “where all of the witnesses are located,” and where the seemingly constant abuse the actress say Depp rained down on her mainly occurred. “The vast majority of these occasions took place in Los Angeles, California, where Mr. Depp would alternate between sober and inebriated states, between lucid and delusional thinking, and between remorse and violence with Ms. Heard,” says material filed with the motion in Old Dominion.
“About a year into our relationship, I began to witness Johnny abusing drugs and alcohol or would notice that he was drunk or high,” a declaration from Heard accompanying the motion to dismiss states, explicitly recounting episodes of extreme violence by Depp during the time the couple were together and the spin he tried to throw on their divorce.
“He frequently went in and out of drug and alcohol dependency medical care, including 24-hour live-in medical aid for the last three years of our relationship,” Heard adds with a very BTS look into Depp’s life that has been hinted at before as he’s faced multi-million-dollar legal battles with ex-business managers, bodyguards, lawyers and more the past few years.
“Whenever he was using, I was worried for both of us,” the actress warned of the Hollywood Vampires guitar player. “He would become a totally different person, often delusional and violent. We called that version of Johnny, ‘the Monster.’”
“Johnny often would not remember his delusional and violent conduct after he came out of his drunk or medicated states,” Heard proclaims, admitting that amidst all the alleged abuse she “loved Johnny” but did once “punch” him to prevent a potential attack upon her sister by Depp.
Adding more to an already festering mound of lawsuits and complaints against the litigious Black Mass actor, Eric George and other attorneys for Heard also have a plan if the case isn’t canned in the “inconvenient forum” of the Southern state. On another hand, if the matter is “transferred without dismissal,” Heard’s crew will simply thrust the courts to gut the whole sordid affair under either the Golden State or Virginia’s anti—SLAPP laws.
“Johnny Depp physically and verbally abused Amber Heard,” declared attorney Eric George after the filing on Thursday. “Since their divorce, Mr. Depp has continued to publicly harass Ms. Heard, and attempted to gaslight the world by denying his abuse, the Browne George Ross LLP partner added.
“It is long past time for Mr. Depp’s despicable conduct to end.”
Whether such alleged conduct does end or not, Heard’s team are clearly determined to push back hard against Depp. The Rum Diary co-star’s marriage came to an end with a temporary restraining order slapped against Depp over domestic violence claims and eventually a $7 million settlement, that Heard ultimately donated most to charity.
Heard’s first official response to the Pirates of the Caribbean actor’s legal screech of March 1 after her anti-domestic violence WaPo op-ed of last December isn’t all the actress or her legal reps had to say.
Even before yesterday’s response by the ambassador on women’s rights at the American Civil Liberties Union, Depp’s lawsuit was called “meritless,” “groundless,” and “frivolous” by Heard’s lawyer George at the beginning of March. The attorney added that he thought the actor was “hell-bent on achieving self-destruction” as his personal life was unflatteringly dragged back into the public spotlight by Depp himself – a constant state of being since the split with Heard three years ago.
Reps for the CAA-represented Depp did not respond to request for comment on Heard’s dismissal motion when contacted by Deadline
However, Depp and his team had plenty to say last month when the latest dust-up landed in the Virginia state court docket. The suit from the man best known as the unpredictable Jack Sparrow proclaimed Heard’s well covered claims of abuse at Depp’s violent hands were “an elaborate hoax to generate positive publicity for Ms. Heard and advance her career.”
That op-ed by Heard clearly got under Depp’s skin for what it claimed and implied – even though the actor wasn’t actually named in the piece.
“I had the rare vantage point of seeing, in real time, how institutions protect men accused of abuse,” Heard herself wrote at the end of 2018 in the op-ed that spurned Depp and his advisors to drag his ex-wife back into court. “I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change.”
The actor’s lawsuit postulated that the claimed misconduct was actually by Heard, then and now, and never himself. Depp and his lawyers additionally claimed the piece in the Jeff Bezos-owned paper tarnished his good name and also cost him a place in the planned Pirates reboot.
A claim the Walt Disney Company has neither confirmed nor denied.
However, it is worth noting that the Bob Iger-led media giant never once mentioned Depp or Pirates at the elaborate and greatest hits-filled Disney Investor Day presentation held at its Burbank-based lot yesterday to roll out the November debuting Disney+ streaming service – an unusual move, considering the Pirates franchise has snared more than $4.5 billion at the global box office since 2003.
Now we’ll see if this lawsuit will go down to Davy Jones’ locker or set sail for California.