Johnny Depp took the stand Tuesday in his libel lawsuit against Amber Heard Tuesday, and firmly denied that he had abused her during their brief marriage. The actor denied ever hitting Heard—or any other woman—and said the accusations were not "based in any species of truth." "Nothing of the kind ever happened,” Depp said, per the Guardian. "Never did I myself reach the point of striking Ms Heard in any way. Nor have I ever struck any woman in my life." More:
- He discusses early life. Depp spent the first hour of his testimony delivering what the AP calls "long, stream-of-consciousness answers to questions about his childhood and his early movie career." He said that when he was growing up, the physical abuse from his mother was "constant" and he didn't want his children to grow up the same way. Depp has two children from an earlier relationship.
- "My goal is the truth." Depp said he was suing to "clear the record," six years after Heard filed for divorce and sought a restraining order. "My goal is the truth," he said, per People. "Since I knew there was no truth to it whatsoever, I felt it my responsibility to stand up not only for myself in that instance but stand up for my children, who at the time were 14 and 16."
- He says career has suffered. "It’s been six years of trying times," the actor said. "It’s very strange when one day you’re Cinderella, so to speak, and then in 0.6 seconds you’re Quasimodo." In 2020, he lost a libel case against British tabloid the Sun, which had called him a "wife beater."
- Substance abuse. Depp admitted using many substances "over the years to numb myself of the ghosts, the wraiths that were still with me from my youth," but said Heard's characterization of his substance abuse had been "grossly embellished," the AP reports. " I am not some maniac who needs to be high or loaded all the time," he said. Heard's lawyers say Depp frequently drank or took drugs to the point of blacking out.
- What's next. Depp's testimony is expected to continue Wednesday, followed by cross-examination. Heard is expected to take the stand later in the trial. The trial is expected to last five weeks and "it is almost a given that the losing side in this sordid affair will appeal and drag the matter on even further," Deadline reports.
(Last week, Heard's former assistant testified that Depp was a "total gentleman.