Johnny Depp Testified He Was Joking When He Said He Wanted To Burn His Ex-Wife Amber Heard
"It's just irreverent and abstract humor," Depp said about texts in which he described burning his ex-wife.
Johnny Depp responded to the graphic and violent text messages he once sent about his ex-wife Amber Heard, saying he was ashamed of the language he'd used but adding it was not "intended to be real."
Depp completed his testimony on Monday after four days on the witness stand in his civil defamation trial against Heard, during which he answered questions from his own lawyers as well as being grilled by Heard's attorneys. The former couple have both accused the other of domestic violence.
After alleging that Depp was repeatedly physically and sexually violent toward Heard, particularly when he was drinking or using drugs, Heard's lawyers on Thursday read text messages that Depp had sent to various people in 2013, including his friend and fellow actor Paul Bettany.
"Let's burn amber!!!" one text from Depp to Bettany read.
"Let's drown her before we burn her!!!" Depp told Bettany in another text.
"I will fuck her burnt corpse afterwards to make sure she is dead," Depp said in another text.
On Monday, under redirect examination from his own attorney, Depp said he is "ashamed" of his language and explained that some of the texts were quotes from Monty Python and the Holy Grail, which includes a sketch about burning and drowning witches.
"This is a film that we all watched when we were 10," Depp said. "It's just irreverent and abstract humor. That's what we're referring to in those texts."
Depp and Heard's attorneys have also provided wildly conflicting explanations for how Depp injured his finger during a trip to Australia in 2015. Depp has accused Heard of throwing a vodka bottle at him, which severed his fingertip. Meanwhile, Heard's attorneys have pointed to Depp's own past statements that he hurt himself. In an audio recording played Thursday, Depp can be heard saying, "the day that I chopped my finger off."
On Monday, Ben King, Depp's former house manager, described what he saw following the 2015 injury. King testified he was the one to find the severed fingertip in the home's bar area. He added there was property damage all around, and he also saw broken vodka bottles.
The next day, King said he and Heard flew back to LA, and that's when he asked her how the house was damaged.
"She didn't give much explanation, if any," King told the court. "She did say, 'Ben, have you ever been so angry at someone that you just lost it with them?'"
Depp is suing Heard for defamation after she wrote an op-ed piece for the Washington Post in 2018, in which she said she was a victim of domestic violence. Depp is not named in the op-ed, but he alleges that because of its implications, his reputation has taken a hit and he has lost movie roles and other work opportunities.
Heard's attorneys have responded that only Depp's own actions have caused the damage to his career.
During redirect examination on Monday, Depp said the accusations have been a "blinding hurt" and shared why he was motivated to sue.
"It was like somebody hit me in the back of the head with a two-by-four," he said. "I had had no ability to speak prior to, because even if I had done an interview to try and explain myself, it would turn into a hit piece, so my mouth was shut and this was the opportunity where I thought something's gotta be done. I couldn't take it anymore."