Amber Heard fires crisis PR firm ahead of testimony in Johnny Depp defamation trial
Heard parted ways with Precision Strategies, a New York-based firm co-founded by Stephanie Cutter, a former advisor to President Barack Obama during his first presidential term, last week due to alleged frustration over coverage that has favored Depp, according to NBC News.
EW can confirm the actress has retained the services of Shane Communications, a corporate communications consulting firm that previously worked against Depp. The firm represented the actor's former business managers, The Management Group, when Depp lodged a lawsuit against them for fraud and breach of contract in 2017.
Representatives for Heard and Precision Strategies did not immediately respond to EW's request for comment on Monday.
Heard is expected to take the stand sometime Wednesday in the defamation trial, which began in Fairfax County, Va. on April 11. Depp is suing Heard for $50 million over her 2018 Washington Post op-ed chronicling her experiences as a domestic violence survivor. Though Heard never mentioned Depp by name in the piece, his lawyers maintain the references to him and her public abuse allegations were clear and that the op-ed damaged his career and reputation.
Depp took the stand during the course of four days last week, fielding questions about his drug and alcohol use, controversial text exchanges with friend and former costar Paul Bettany, audio recordings that chronicled a tumultuous relationship with Heard, and more. He also testified that Heard's allegations of domestic violence have impacted his career, including his role in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
The former couple met on set of the 2011 drama The Rum Diary and married in 2015. Heard filed for divorce from Depp in 2016, obtaining a domestic violence restraining order against the actor and accusing him of physically and verbally abusing her during "violent and volatile" episodes while under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Depp has denied the allegations, calling them "heinous and disturbing" and "not based in any species of truth."