Update (12/19/22 2:10 p.m. EST): Johnny Depp’s lawyer Camille Vasquez said that the actor and his legal team were pleased with Amber Heard deciding to settle in a statement obtained by HollywoodLife. “We are pleased to formally close the door on this painful chapter for Mr. Depp, who made clear throughout this process that his priority was about bringing the truth to light,” she said. “The payment of $1M — which Mr. Depp is pledging and will donate to charities — reinforces Ms. Heard’s acknowledgment of the conclusion of the legal system’s rigorous pursuit of justice.”
Original: Amber Heard, 36, and Johnny Depp, 59, have finally settled their defamation case, after Amber tried to appeal the June 2022 verdict that went in Johnny’s favor. “After a great deal of deliberation I have made a very difficult decision to settle the defamation case brought against me by my ex-husband in Virginia,” Amber wrote on Instagram Dec. 19.
“It is important for me to say I never chose this,” Amber said in her statement. “I defended my truth and in doing so my life as I knew it was destroyed. The vilification I have faced on social media is an amplified version of the ways in which women are re-victimized when they come forward.”
Amber, who lost the case against Johnny and was ordered to pay her ex $10 million in damages for being found guilty of defaming him in an op-ed piece for The Washington Post, explained that her settlement doesn’t change her story. “I have made no admission. This is not an act of concession. There are no restrictions or gags with respect to my voice moving forward,” she said. The Aquaman actress also called out how she “was exposed to a type of humiliation that I simply cannot re-live” during the trial, before noting that she’s settled the case because “time is precious, and I want to spend my time productively and purposefully.”
“In settling this case I’m also choosing the freedom to dedicate my time to the work that helped me heal after my divorce; work that exists in realms in which I feel seen, heard and believed and in which I know I can effect change,” Amber said. “I will not be threatened, disheartened, or dissuaded by what happened from speaking the truth. No one can and no one will take that from me. My voice forever remains the most valuable asset I have,” she added. Amber concluded her statement by thanking her legal team and anyone that supported her during the trial.
Amber filed to appeal the verdict in the defamation case on December 5. In court documents, the actress claimed that Johnny’s defamation claims against her should have been dismissed before a trial even took place. Amber’s lawyer even previously stated that Amber could not afford to pay the $10 million to Johnny.
Amber’s Washington Post op-ed featured her opening up about being the victim of domestic abuse. She never mentioned Johnny by name in the article, but the Pirates of the Caribbean sued her for defamation, and after a highly-publicized trial played out where Johnny had a ton of public support, he won.
Johnny also appealed part of the verdict in the case, where he was ordered to pay Amber $2 million in damages. Amber had countersued Johnny and claimed that he defamed her through three statements made by his lawyer to DailyMail. One of the three statements was found to be defamatory in court, which Johnny is now appealing.