Johnny Depp’s lawsuit: Where do his fans stand?3 min read

Following the outcome of his lawsuit against The Sun, Johnny Depp is being replaced on Fantastic Beasts. Dior however is not being influenced by the lawsuit.

The actor has been the face of Dior’s Sauvage perfume since 2015, when it was first launched.

Now, almost a month after he lost his libel case against The Sun, Dior has made the decision to keep him as the face of the campaign. The news brought joy to fans of Depp all over the world.

The lawsuit

The case concerned an article by The Sun, whereby the newspaper called the actor a ‘wife beater’. A High Court judge found the claim ‘substantially true’ as, per his decision, Depp had hit his then-wife, Amber Heard, a total of 12 times. This is on the balance of probabilities, which is the civil, not the criminal standard.

As it is known, the criminal standard of proof is ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ which is what is needed to convict someone of a criminal offence. However, because this was a defamation case against an article, it was regarded as a civil one. This means that the judge only had to find that the actor had ‘more likely than not’ hit his wife.

The other side of the story

Fans have rejoiced around Dior’s decision, having expressed contempt over the judge’s findings. However, there are several recordings, pictures, as well as factual and character witnesses to suggest Heard could have been the abuser. Depp claimed he was merely acting in self-defence against his then-wife.

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard

The recordings show Heard admitting to hitting Depp, creating physical fights, and complaining that the actor would not confront her when acting violently. She also says she was not ‘punching’ but only ‘hitting’ him and admitted to getting so angry that she can ‘lose it’.

The judge said (paragraph 175) the recordings were not accurate evidence as they were not said in a courtroom, where a witness swears to tell the truth under oath.

Character witnesses, including the mother of his children Vanessa Paradis, long-term partner Wynona Rider, and co-star Penelope Cruz testified on behalf of Depp. They all said Depp has never shown any signs of violence against them or anyone else.

Texts were shown to the court between Heard and her mother, during which Heard said Depp hadn’t acted violently towards her (paragraph 225). She then stated she lied in order to protect her mother, which the judge accepted as a valid reason (paragraph 225).

Several of Depp’s staff, including his head of security, testified that they have seen Heard behave violently to him. Pictures of bruises on Heard’s face were also allegedly faked.

Inside the Magic/flickr – Johnny Depp (front, middle right) standing with his co-stars. Penelope Cruz (front, middle left).

What caught Twitter’s attention, however, was an image that was shown to the court of Heard having defecated on Depp’s bed. This resulted in the hashtag #Amberturd trending on Twitter.

Another highlight was Depp’s slashed off finger, which was allegedly a result of Heard’s rage. However, the judge found (paragraph 370) it was the actor’s own doing.

How have fans reacted?

The libel case caused Depp to lose his role on Fantastic Beasts, which further upset fans. This led to a petition calling for Heard to be fired from Aquaman 2 reaching over 1.5 million signatures.

Fans are praising Dior all over social media since they believe Depp to be the victim of domestic abuse. They also accused the film industry and the court system of enforcing a double standard against victims of domestic violence.

They even went as far as to call for a boycott of Warner Bros.

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