Amber Heard denies being cut from Aquaman 2: 'Inaccurate, insensitive, and slightly insane'
"The rumor mill continues as it has from day one — inaccurate, insensitive, and slightly insane," a spokesperson for the actress tells EW in response to a report that Warner Bros. cut her from Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom and plans to recast the Mera role.
Reps for Warner Bros. didn't respond to EW's request for comment.
Heard's involvement in the franchise was a frequent topic of discussion at the recent defamation trial between her and her ex-husband, Johnny Depp. The trial concluded earlier this month with the jury siding with Depp, determining Heard defamed him when she wrote a 2018 Washington Post op-ed about her experiences as a domestic violence survivor.
During the trial, the actress testified that her role in the sequel was significantly "pared down" amid Depp's alleged smear campaign against her, claiming that she had to "fight really hard" to remain in 2017's Justice League, 2018's Aquaman, and the forthcoming Lost Kingdom. Warner Bros. "didn't want to include me," Heard said. The actress reportedly appears in the film for only 10 minutes.
"I was given a script and then given new versions of the script that had taken away scenes that had action in it, that depicted my character and another character, without giving any spoiler aways, two characters fighting with one another, and they basically took a bunch out of my role," Heard told the court. "They just removed a bunch out."
Heard's talent agent Jessica Kovacevic also testified that Warner Bros. wanted to recast her and cited her lack of chemistry with costar Jason Momoa. But Kovacevic said she believes the decision had more to do with the bad press surrounding her divorce than chemistry issues. "No one wants that association," Kovacevic said in a pre-recorded deposition.
Walter Hamada, president of DC Films at Warner Bros., denied Heard's suspicions in his own deposition. When called on behalf of Depp's legal team, Hamada testified that Heard's role was never reduced and that the film was always meant to be a "buddy comedy" between Momoa's title superhero and his half-brother Orm, played by Patrick Wilson. The studio never planned for Heard to be a co-lead, he said.
The WB executive did confirm, however, that the studio discussed possibly recasting Heard due to a lack of chemistry with Momoa. "It was the concerns that were brought up at the wrap of the first movie production movie, which is the issue of chemistry," Hamada testified.
"The chemistry, you know, editorially, they were able to make that relationship work in the first movie but there was a concern that it took a lot of effort to get there and [they] would be better off recasting [and] finding someone who had a bit more natural chemistry with Jason Momoa," he added.
Aquaman 2 is scheduled for a March 17, 2023, theatrical release.
- Amber Heard admits to 'horrible, regrettable' mistakes in Johnny Depp relationship, but she 'always told the truth'
- Amber Heard says she doesn't 'blame' the jury for siding with Johnny Depp: 'He's a fantastic actor'
- Johnny Depp's attorneys speak about defamation trial for the first time: 'This was never about money'
Jason Momoa returns as the half-human, half-Atlantean king of the seven seas.