Timeline: Johnny Depp and Amber Heard

Johnny Depp has won his multimillion-dollar US libel lawsuit brought against his ex-wife Amber Heard.

Here’s a timeline of the legal twists and turns of Hollywood’s tumultuous romance that was exposed to the world.

– 2011

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard started dating after meeting on the set of comedy movie The Rum Diary.

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard started dating after meeting on the set of The Rum Diary (Yui Mok/PA)

(PA Archive)

– Early 2013

Mr Depp is said to have been physically violent towards Ms Heard for the first time.

Ms Heard claims the actor slapped her three times after joking about a tattoo he got on his arm during his relationship with actress Winona Ryder. He denies the allegation.

– 2015

Mr. Depp and Ms. Heard tied the knot in a private ceremony in Los Angeles in February.

The couple are on a trip to Australia in March in what Ms Heard describes as “a three-day hostage situation”, claiming Mr Depp is violent while drinking heavily and taking drugs.

Mr Depp again denies the allegations and says Ms Heard lost his temper after a conversation about a post-nup agreement.

– 2016

In May, the couple separated after an incident in which Ms Heard claims Mr Depp got angry at their Los Angeles penthouse and destroyed the property with a bottle of champagne.

divorce from the actor in May 2016 (Yui Mok/PA)” height=”5669″ width=”4000″ layout=”responsive” class=”inline-gallery-btn i-amphtml-layout-responsive i-amphtml-layout-size-defined” on=”tap:inline-image-gallery,inline-image-carousel.goToSlide(index=2)” tabindex=”0″ role=”button” data-gallery-length=”5″ i-amphtml-layout=”responsive”>

Ms Heard files for divorce from the actor in May 2016 (Yui Mok/PA)

(PA Archive)

Ms. Heard files a petition to dissolve their marriage as well as a temporary domestic violence restraining order, which prevents Mr. Depp from contacting her.

The estranged couple reach an agreement regarding the dissolution of their marriage. Ms Heard then donates her seven million US dollars (£5.5million) settlement to charity.

– 2017

The couple officially divorced in January.

– 2018

An article by The Sun newspaper’s editor, Dan Wootton, is published in April, in which he calls Mr Depp a “wife beater” in the headline.

The actor is suing News Group Newspapers (NGN) – the owner of The Sun – for defamation.

Ms Heard publishes an article in the Washington Post in December that discusses her personal experiences of domestic violence.

It’s titled, “I spoke out against sexual violence—and faced the wrath of our culture. This needs to change,” but does not mention Mr. Depp by name.

The actor filed a libel suit against News Group Newspapers (NGN) – the owner of The Sun in 2018 (Victoria Jones/PA)

(PA Archive)

– 2019

Mr Depp is launching a $50m (£38m) libel suit against Ms Heard, with his lawyers claiming the article falsely implies that she was physically and sexually abused by the actor when they got married.

He claims the play got him kicked out of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise and that Ms. Heard was the one who abused him.

– 2020

The couple meet at the Royal Courts Of Justice in London for the NGN libel trial of Mr. Depp, who has been delayed due to the coronavirus crisis.

After a 16-day trial in July, a judge concluded that the content of the article was found to be “substantially true”.

Judge Nicol denied Mr. Depp’s request for leave to appeal his decision to the Court of Appeal.

Lawyers for Mr Depp file grounds of appeal with the Court of Appeal, arguing that the actor “did not receive a fair trial” and that Judge Nicol’s decision is “manifestly wrong” and “obviously dangerous”.

– 2021

The UK Court of Appeal is refusing Mr Depp leave to appeal the High Court decision.

– 2022

Mr. Depp’s 2019 libel case against Ms. Heard, also delayed due to the pandemic, began April 11 in Fairfax County District Court, Va. (Shawn Thew/AP)


Mr. Depp’s 2019 defamation case against Ms. Heard, also delayed due to the pandemic, begins April 11 in Fairfax County District Court in Virginia.

Over the course of six weeks, jurors hear from family members, friends, colleagues, employees as well as testimony from Mr. Depp and Ms. Heard.

Multiple cases of alleged abuse are outlined to the jury, with both parties claiming they are the victims.

On June 1, the jury decides in Mr. Depp’s favor and finds the 2018 Washington Post article to be defamatory.

Mr Depp is awarded compensatory damages of $10m (£8m) and a further five million (£4m) in punitive damages.

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