Even after she was sued by Johnny Depp for defamation, Amber Heard had support from some of her Hollywood peers. In new testimony from May 23, entertainment industry consultant Kathryn Arnold claimed the only reason Amber, 36, kept her role of Mera in Aquaman 2 was because she had the support of star Jason Momoa, 42, and the film’s director James Wan. According to Kathryn, the two were “adamant” about keeping her in the film, per reporting by the New York Post.
“It was that moment where not only was she a good actor, but she was now world-renowned because she was in the most successful film … for DC Comics,” Kathryn said to the Fairfax, Va. courtroom, speaking about how big of a career move playing Mera was for Amber. “It was just this extraordinary moment for her, for her career to take off.” Instead, Kathryn insisted Amber’s career fell flat once Johnny, 58, sued her for defamation following her 2018 op-ed for the Washington Post in which she spoke about being a survivor of domestic abuse. While she did not name Johnny in her piece, it was believed to be about him, considering the couple had recently split at the time.
Kathryn went on to claim that Amber lost between $45 and $50 million in future projects and endorsement deals once Johnny sued her. She also said Amber is now haunted on social media by her involvement with the Edward Scissorhands actor, noting that “every time she appears anywhere, the social media negativity campaign starts up again.”
A week earlier on May 17, Amber shared a similar sentiment. “I had to fight really hard to keep my career after I got my [restraining order against Depp],” she testified on May 17, per Vanity Fair. “I lost opportunities. I got dropped from jobs and campaigns. I fought to keep my job and the biggest movie opportunity I had to date [with] Justice League with the option to [star in] Aquaman. I had to fight really hard to stay in Justice League because that was the time of the divorce.”
After explaining how Amber’s career was negatively affected following the lawsuit, Kathryn pointed out some of Johnny’s alleged flaws. “Well, we’ve talked about the erratic behavior, the tardiness, the drugs, and alcohol abuse,” she said of the actor, adding that she believes it’s an “unfortunate problem … for the industry to continue to work with him even though all this is out in the public.”
On the flip side, Johnny’s team said the lawsuit has negatively affected him as well. For instance, Johnny’s talent manager Jack Whigham said he was axed from the iconic Pirates of the Caribbean franchise following Amber’s article. He was set to earn $22 million from the sixth installment of the popular film series.
Johhny’s defamation lawsuit against Amber, which he officially filed in 2019, is for $50 million. Amber is countersuing Johhny for $100 million in damages. Johnny lost a defamation case in 2020 against the British newspaper, The Sun, which involved quotes from Amber’s Washington Post article.