Johnny Depp and Amber Heard: Court hears details of birthday row

Johnny Depp at the High Court on FridayImage copyright

Details of arguments between Johnny Depp and his ex-wife have been relayed to London’s High Court, as the actor’s libel claim against the Sun continues.

Mr Depp, 57, told the court Amber Heard, 34, was angry when he was late to her 30th birthday party in 2016.

Ms Heard claims he threw a magnum of champagne at her – which he denies.

Mr Depp is suing for libel over an article that called him a “wife beater” – but the Sun newspaper maintains the story was accurate.

The April 2018 piece by journalist Dan Wootton was about the casting of Mr Depp in the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them film franchise.

Mr Depp’s lawyers say the article made “defamatory allegations of the utmost seriousness”, by accusing him of committing serious assaults on Ms Heard.

On the fourth day of proceedings, London’s High Court was told about the birthday party at a venue in Los Angeles in April 2016.

Mr Depp said he was late to the event after receiving bad news about his finances and later retired to bed to read in an attempt “to avoid any confrontation with Ms Heard”.

Sasha Wass QC, representing Sun publisher News Group Newspapers, asked if Mr Depp was really reading a book on his wife’s birthday when she had said she was upset he was late to her party.

Mr Depp replied: “I thought her behaviour regarding the subject of my tardiness to her birthday dinner, I thought that it was too much… her anger, her rage… when I had been texting Ms Heard, telling her, ‘I am so sorry, I’m going to be late.'”

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Ms Wass went on to suggest Mr Depp had become angry after Ms Heard raised the issue of him being late to the party, and he got out of bed to argue with her, which the actor denied.

The barrister said Mr Depp was “very distressed about the news you had received and the last thing you wanted to be told was that you were a disappointment to your wife”.

Mr Depp replied: “I believe that’s the last thing any husband would want to hear.”

Ms Wass went on to accuse Mr Depp of picking up a magnum bottle of champagne and throwing it at Ms Heard, which missed, with the glass smashing, which he denied.

She also alleged he grabbed Ms Heard by her hair and pushed her onto the bed” adding “when she tried to leave, you blocked the bedroom door and you tried to grab her hair”.

The barrister suggested Mr Depp then “pushed her to the ground” and “bumped her chest” before leaving a birthday message which contained an expletive and exiting the apartment.

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Amber Heard’s 30th birthday was held at the iconic Eastern Columbia Building in LA

Ms Wass then described to the court events which followed, described as the “defecation incident”.

The barrister said to Mr Depp that “it came to your attention the following, that was the day of Amber’s actual birthday, that the cleaner had found faeces in the bed”.

She suggested Mr Depp was later sent photographs of the faeces, which the actor found “hilarious” and that “there were jokes like… ‘Amber in the dumps’ going on.”

Mr Depp replied: “It was one of the most absurd, unexpected statements that I have ever witnessed in my life so, yes, initially I did laugh because it was so strange.”

He told the court it was “a mystery” who defecated in the bed “and it was not left by a three or four-pound dog”, in reference to the couple’s pets, one of which was said to have “problems with her toilet habits”.

“I was convinced that it was either Ms Heard herself or one of her cohort involved in leaving human faeces on the bed,” Mr Depp added.

He told the court he thought the incident was “a fitting end to the relationship”.

Details of Ms Heard’s allegations of sexual violence against the Pirates of the Caribbean star were heard in private on Friday and not disclosed to the press or public.

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Mr Depp and Ms Heard were married for two years until 2017

The case arose out of the publication of an article on the Sun’s website headlined: “Gone Potty: How can JK Rowling be ‘genuinely happy’ casting wife beater Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts film?”

The Sun’s original article related to allegations made by the actress, who was married to the film star from 2015 to 2017.

Witnesses including Mr Depp’s former partners Vanessa Paradis and Winona Ryder are expected to give evidence via video link, and the hearing is expected to last for three weeks.

Mr Depp, has been Oscar and Bafta-nominated and won a Golden Globe in 2008 for Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.

The case continues.

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