Watch live: Closing arguments in Johnny Depp's defamation trial against Amber Heard
The highly-publicized trial began on April 11 in Fairfax County, Va. In the weeks since, Depp and Heard have finished their initial time on the stand, along with others from the former couple's inner circle, including past and current employees and mental health, medical, and entertainment experts.
Depp's ex-girlfriend, model Kate Moss, and a Warner Bros. executive, Walter Hamada, were among those who testified for his defense. Elsewhere, the actor's former lover, actress Ellen Barkin, and his former talent agent, Tracey Jacobs, were among those who testified for Heard's defense. Both Depp and Heard also returned to the stand ahead of Friday's closing statements as rebuttal witnesses.
Today, Depp and Heard's defense will present closing arguments. Jury deliberations will begin after closing arguments conclude.
Watch the livestream here:
Depp is suing Heard for $50 million over her 2018 Washington Post op-ed detailing her experiences as a domestic abuse survivor. Though Heard never mentioned Depp by name in the piece, his lawyers argue that references to him, and Heard's previous abuse allegations, are clear and have damaged his career and reputation. Heard has filed a $100 million countersuit, claiming Depp and his legal team defamed her by calling her allegations a hoax.
Read below for a recap of the trial so far.
During Depp's time on the stand in April, childhood trauma (namely, his abusive mother), his substance use, and domestic violence were recurrent themes. Depp said Heard had a "need for violence," accusing her of leaving human feces on his bed, severing the tip of his finger following an argument, physically abusing him, and cheating on him with costars. He also addressed controversial text messages sent to friend and former costar Paul Bettany (one of which said he wanted to "burn" and "drown" Heard and "f---" her rotting corpse), attributing them to his dark humor.
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During Heard's time on the stand, she testified that Depp abused drugs, physically and sexually assaulted her, and launched a "smear campaign" against her after their split. Depp's "drinking correlated with violence," Heard told the court. She also denied leaving human feces on his bed and severing the tip of his finger. The actress also spoke about the "revolving door" of cheating accusations from Depp, noting he tried to discourage her from working as an actress.
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Heard and Depp's witnesses testify
So far, Depp's sister Christi Dembrowski, longtime friend Isaac Baruch, doctor David Kipper, talent manager Jack Whigham, and couples therapist Lauren Anderson have been among witnesses on his behalf. Meanwhile, Heard's sister Whitney Henriquez, talent agent Jessica Kovacevic, and former makeup artist Melanie Inglessis, among others, testified on her behalf. Anderson testified that the couple engaged in "mutual abuse." Some witnesses maintained that Heard would initiate arguments, while others testified that Depp would become "violent" and "angry" after drinking and doing drugs in excess. Depp and Heard also have some famous names on their witness list. Actress Ellen Barkin, who dated Depp in 1994, testified about his alleged anger and violence on behalf of Heard. While Elon Musk and James Franco are listed as witnesses for Heard, the two have not been called to testify. Model Kate Moss, who dated Depp in the '90s, will be called to testify.
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Depp's rebuttal witnesses testify
After losing a bid to dismiss Heard's defamation countersuit, Depp's defense called on forensic, medical, social media, and entertainment experts to refute experts previously called by Heard's defense. Depp's hand surgeon purported that he couldn't have punched Heard during an altercation that occurred after he severed the tip of his finger in Australia in 2015, noting it would've likely damaged his hand cast. A Warner Bros. executive countered all of Heard's previous claims about her role being reduced in Aquaman 2 due to Depp's alleged "smear campaign" to paint her as a liar following her abuse allegations. Elsewhere, an entertainment lawyer and economic damages expert refuted previous testimony that Heard should have had a career trajectory like stars Zendaya, Ana de Armas, Gal Gadot, and Aquaman costar Jason Momoa. A social media and internet analytics expert also countered claims that there was more negative online content targeting Heard that damaged her reputation. Model Kate Moss, who dated Depp from 1994 to 1997, appeared via video and denied rumors of Depp pushing her down a flight of stairs, while a former TMZ producer and metadata expert testified that Heard edited photos of her bruised face and videos.
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Depp takes the stand again
Depp returned to the stand during rebuttals, countering previous testimony from Heard and her defense. He continued to deny Heard's abuse allegations, calling them "unimaginably brutal, cruel, and all false." Depp testified that it was Heard who would hit him on multiple occasions, simultaneously accusing her of hitting her sister Whitney, who has testified on her behalf. Depp also testified that he helped Heard get her role in Aquaman, which the actress refuted in her testimony.
Heard takes the stand again
Ahead of Friday's closing arguments, Heard returned to the stand to refute testimony from Depp and his defense. She denied leaking information and videos that depicted Depp in a negative light to press, and also spoke about the tolls of being painted as a liar. "I am harassed, humiliated, [and] threatened every single day," Heard testified, noting that she has been telling the truth. "People want to kill me and they tell me so everyday." She said she has received death threats regularly since the trial began.