Amber Heard is responding after ex-husband Johnny Depp shared a message to his fans on TikTok about “moving forward” after the verdict in his defamation trial against her.
On Tuesday — just under a week since the jury sided mostly with Depp and the court awarded him $10.35 million in damages and Heard $2 million after a six-week trial — Depp, 58, joined TikTok and thanked his “loyal” fans.
His first upload on the social media site was a montage of his recent music touring with Jeff Beck, with the caption, “To all of my most treasured, loyal and unwavering supporters. We’ve been everywhere together, we have seen everything together. We have walked the same road together. We did the right thing together, all because you cared.”
“And now, we will all move forward together,” he continued. “You are, as always, my employers and once again I am whittled down to no way to say thank you, other than just by saying thank you. So, thank you. My love & respect, JD.” Depp has so far gained 4.6 million TikTok followers.
A spokesperson for Heard, 36, responded to Depp’s message in a statement, saying, “As Johnny Depp says he’s ‘moving forward,’ women’s rights are moving backward. The verdict’s message to victims of domestic violence is … be afraid to stand up and speak out.”
Heard, who plans to appeal the verdict, said in a statement after it was revealed last Wednesday, “The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence and sway of my ex-husband.”
“I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It is a setback,” she added. “It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.”
“I believe Johnny’s attorneys succeeded in getting the jury to overlook the key issue of Freedom of Speech and ignore evidence that was so conclusive that we won in the U.K.,” Heard continued. “I’m sad I lost this case. But I am sadder still that I seem to have lost a right I thought I had as an American — to speak freely and openly.”
In his own post-verdict statement, Depp said that the “jury gave me my life back” and said the “best is yet to come and a new chapter has finally begun” for him. He added, “I hope that my quest to have the truth be told will have helped others, men or women, who have found themselves in my situation, and that those supporting them never give up.”
The Washington Post has added an editor’s note to the December 2018 op-ed written by Heard that was found to be defamatory. During the trial, Heard explained of her reason for participating in the op-ed, “I was looking forward to the opportunity to lend my voice to what I thought was a great cause, which is just a conversation around women’s issues and gendered issues that I think the whole country was having at that time.”
She also testified that said she was “proud” of the op-ed and even had the print version framed. Heard maintained, “Every word of it is true.”
While on the witness stand, Heard spoke about the “vitriol” she receives online from some of Depp’s fans. “I am harassed, humiliated, threatened every single day. Even just walking into this courtroom, sitting here in front of the world, having the worst parts of my life, things that I’ve lived through, used to humiliate me. People want to kill me, and they tell me so every day. People want to put my baby in the microwave, and they tell me that,” she said.
Heard also said, “I’m not a saint. I’m not trying to present myself as one, as you all know,” and explained that it’s been “agonizing” to see online “mocking” of her testimony. “I just want Johnny to leave me alone,” she said, adding, “I don’t deserve this. I want to move on.”
The pair wed in February 2015 after meeting while making 2011’s The Rum Diary. Heard then filed for divorce and a domestic violence restraining order in May 2016. Depp has maintained that he never abused his ex-wife.
Depp’s win in the defamation trial comes 19 months after he lost his U.K. libel suit back in November 2020. He sued British tabloid The Sun for calling him a “wife-beater.” Heard testified to back up the claims, and a London judge upheld the outlet’s claims as being “substantially true.” In March 2021, his attempt to overturn that decision was overruled.