Johnny Depp attacks ‘hit’ articles about his drinking and finances published before Amber Heard’s op-ed

At the start of the third week of his libel trial over Amber Heard, Johnny Depp was asked about a number of negative reports written about him.

Mr. Depp has been on the witness stand since Tuesday, April 19. He sued his ex-wife Amber Heard for alleged defamation over an op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post in December 2018, in which she does not name him but describes himself as “a public figure representing domestic violence”.

“For years before 2018 when Amber wrote the op-ed, there was a lot of negative news about you that was made public, wasn’t there?” Ms. Heard’s lawyer asked Mr. Depp.

Mr Depp confirmed the lawyer meant ‘by 2018’ and then replied: ‘Yes, it all started with Ms Heard going straight to court to get a [temporary restraining order] with a bruise on his face and paparazzi. It was the start of the ball rolling down the slope and gaining momentum.

Reports that Ms Heard obtained a temporary restraining order against Mr Depp first appeared on May 27, 2016.

In court, Ms Heard’s lawyer asked Mr Depp: ‘There were a lot of negative stories about you before May 27, 2016, when Amber went to court, weren’t there?’

“I’ve been in Hollywood racketeering since 1984,” Mr. Depp replied.

Ms Heard’s lawyer interrupted: ‘Mr. Depp, I’m asking you a yes or no question. There was a lot of negative news about you before May 27, 2016, right? »

“From 1984 until then, there were all the s — there were both,” Mr. Depp said. “So of course people read negative stories.”

Mr Depp was then asked to look at a stack of items that had been placed in front of him, which he described as ‘a stack of hit coins’.

Ms Heard’s lawyer then read aloud a series of headlines that all predate Ms Heard’s 2018 op-ed in The Washington Post.

These included a 2014 Guardian article titled: “Apparently drunk Johnny Depp cut at Hollywood Film Awards”; a piece of 2017 by The Hollywood Reporter titled “Johnny Depp Has a ‘Clear and Epic’ Sense of Entitlement, Ex-Managers Say”; another article from 2017 by The Hollywood Reporter with the title “Johnny Depp: A Star in Crisis and the Insane Story of His ‘Missing’ Millions”; and a 2017 piece from Insider titled “Johnny Depp is said to have been drinking heavily and was constantly late to the new ‘Pirates’ film set.”

Also mentioned in court were a 2017 vanity lounge article titled “Johnny Depp’s financial problems could sink the next Pirates of the Caribbean”; a 2018 rolling stone article titled ‘The Trouble With Johnny Depp: Multimillion-Dollar Lawsuit, A Haze Of Booze And Hash, A Marriage Gone Badly And A Lifestyle He Can’t Afford – In The Trials Of Johnny Depp”; and a 2018 Daily Mail article captioned: “Vodka for breakfast, 72 hours of drug use and spending sprees: ALISON BOSHOFF reveals why Hollywood is reeling from so-called Johnny Depp’s career suicide note.

Mr Depp took issue with some of the items mentioned and described them as “all hit tracks”.

Ms Heard counter-sued Mr Depp in Virginia, accusing him of orchestrating a ‘smear campaign’ against her and describing her own lawsuit as a continuation of ‘abuse and harassment’.

The trial is expected to last six weeks.

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