In a landmark decision, the High Court of England and Wales ordered actress Amber Heard to pay actor Johnny Depp 8.3 million dollars in damages for a defamatory article she wrote in 2018. The case has been closely watched by Hollywood insiders who are likely to take note of this legal precedent for any future defamation disputes.
The Dispute between Amber Heard and Johnny Depp
The dispute arose from an article by Heard in The Washington Post on December 8th, 2018, titled “I spoke up against sexual violence—and faced our culture’s wrath.”
In the article, Heard suggested that she was a victim of domestic abuse at the hands of her ex-husband, Depp, without explicitly naming him. Depp subsequently filed suit against Heard, alleging defamation and claiming that the article caused significant harm to his reputation and career prospects.
The Ruling of Amber Heard vs Johnny Depp
In its judgment released on November 2nd, 2020, the High Court ruled in favor of Depp, finding that the term “perpetrator” used by Heard did refer to him and constituted libelous language.
As part of its ruling, the court awarded Depp 6.8 million pounds (approximately 8.3 million dollars) in damages from Heard as well as an additional 800 thousand pounds (approximately 1 million dollars) for costs incurred during the trial process. This is one of the largest awards ever given for a defamation case involving an individual plaintiff in British legal history.
Does Amber Heard wants to avoid paying Johnny Depp at all costs?
Actress Amber Heard is reportedly determined to not pay her ex-husband Johnny Depp a single penny from the $7 million she ordered to pay him in their recent legal battle. Sources close to Heard claim she will do whatever it takes to avoid paying Depp, even if it means dragging out the case until it is no longer viable.
Despite being ordered to pay Depp, Heard has yet to make any payment and appears to be firm in her determination to hold out for as long as she can.
Implications for Hollywood
This ruling sets a new standard for celebrity defamation cases and will undoubtedly have implications for how celebrities handle such disputes going forward.
While such cases have typically been settled out of court to avoid negative publicity or further damage reputations and careers, celebrities may now be more willing to pursue litigation if they believe their rights have been violated or their reputations wrongly tarnished by another party’s words or actions.
This case serves as a reminder that public figures are entitled to protection from false accusations just like anyone else under the law and should not be subject to unfounded allegations which could damage their professional standing or public perception without proper recourse available for them to seek justice through legal channels.
From now on, this ruling will likely encourage celebrities who feel wronged by other parties’ words or actions to pursue more aggressive legal action instead of opting for settlement agreements outside court proceedings. The outcome of this case is likely to shape how similar disputes are handled in Hollywood in the future.