After the verdict in the defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard, Hollywood star Johnny Depp declared, “The jury gave me my life back.” He couldn’t have said it any better.
The Pirates of the Caribbean actor received much greater damages when a jury in the United States ruled overwhelmingly in his favour. Depp, who sued Heard for defamation over a 2018 article in The Washington Post about domestic violence, may have won. But his triumph isn’t complete.
The court also ruled Depp guilty of defamation as a result of his former lawyer Adam Waldman’s statements about Heard’s assault allegations. Heard received $2 million in compensatory damages from the jury, but no punitive damages.
Depp was granted compensatory damages of $10 million and punitive damages of $5 million.
While Depp may be a hit in the United States, he is not so in the United Kingdom. Why is this the case? In November 2020, he lost a libel action in which he was accused of being an abuser in the United Kingdom.
In the UK, Johnny Depp’s case was against The Sun and not Heard.
What was the libel case in the UK?
Depp sued the executive editor and publisher of the British tabloid The Sun for libel in 2018 after the publication of an article alleging that he abused Amber Heard and referred to him as a “wife-beater.” Depp maintains his denial of the accusation.
The Sun had to show its allegations against the Hollywood actor were true when the matter went to trial in a London court. In July, the trial was held at the Royal Courts of Justice in London for 16 days. Heard was summoned to testify by the publication. Between 2013 and 2016, she claims Depp abused her 14 times.
The judge found 12 occurrences of domestic violence out of the 14 alleged attacks heard in court.
On November 2, 2020, Judge Justice Nicol stated that The Sun had proven the report to be “largely true.”
“A common element in Mr Depp’s evidence was that Ms Heard had devised a fake and that she had done this as an ‘insurance policy,'” Justice Nicol stated, adding that the actress was a “gold-digger.” He came to the conclusion that he didn’t agree with such “characterization” of Heard.
The London court’s decision did not lead to the dismissal of Heard’s lawsuit in the United States for an article published in The Washington Post in December 2018. That is why the lawsuit in Virginia was pursued.
Why did Depp win in the US after losing in the UK?
The judgement, which went against Depp, was made by a single judge in the United Kingdom, whereas it was made by a jury in the United States.
In the United Kingdom, libel law has generally favoured plaintiffs, leading to “libel tourism.”
Plaintiffs in the United States have a significantly higher burden of proof when it comes to proving libel against a public figure. In a libel trial in the United States, a plaintiff must show that they were hurt by an entity acting with actual malice, which means they knew a libellous statement was false when they made it.
What’s Next For Johnny Depp After Amber Heard Defamation Trial?
Johnny Depp’s last big-screen appearance was in Minamata, a drama that premiered in the United States in February and starred as the actor/producer in the critically acclaimed portrayal of American photographer W. Eugene Smith is a well-known author. While it was announced in January that Depp would play King Louis XV in the period film Jeanne Du Barry (directed by Mawenn), it has now been disclosed that the Pirates of the Caribbean star will also collaborate with guitarist Jeff Beck on an album that will be published in July.
Fans of Johnny Depp’s music will only have to wait until next month to hear his collaboration with Jeff Beck. In terms of his film work, we’ll have to wait for a little for Jeanne Du Barry to be released, but whenever it is, we’ll let you know.