Amber Heard said she will defend her testimony until her “dying day” in an interview with the TODAY show’s Savannah Guthrie, following a Virginia jury’s ruling two weeks ago in the high-profile defamation trial between Heard and her ex-husband Johnny Depp.
“To my dying day [I] will stand by every word of my testimony,” Heard said about the six-week trial, which thrust into the public eye intimate details—including several instances of alleged verbal and physical abuse—of the former couple’s private lives.
In February 2019, Depp sued Heard for $50 million over the 2018 op-ed in which she referred to herself as a public face for domestic abuse but did not mention Depp by name. Heard countersued Depp for $100 million, after his lawyer called her allegations a hoax.
“[The] vast majority of this trial was played out on social media. I think this trial is an example of that gone haywire,” Heard said about the social media spectacle that emerged during the trial. “I think [for] even the most well-intentioned juror, it would be impossible to avoid this.”
Throughout the trial, many viewers shared their own opinions on the case, which often skewed heavily in favor of Depp, on Twitter and TikTok. Supporters of Depp crowded the courthouse with signs antagonizing Heard. “It was the most humiliating and horrible thing I’ve been through,” Heard said as she described passing the signs every day on her way to the courthouse. “I felt less than human.”
Two weeks ago, the jury awarded Depp $10.4 million in damages after deciding that Heard defamed Depp. Heard was awarded $2 million for one count of her defamation countersuit. According to her lawyer, Elaine Bredehoft, Heard is planning to appeal the decision.
When asked if she had felt confident about her odds of winning the trial, she said, “I want to say yes, but it wouldn’t be true.”
Heard brought up the outcome of Depp’s 2020 libel suit against the U.K. tabloid, The Sun, which he sued over a 2018 headline that referred to him as a “wife-beater.” The presiding judge ruled that 12 of the 14 instances of abuse by Depp had occurred—and that The Sun’s article was “substantially true.”
“There was another trial [that] dealt with the same substantive issues… handled differently with a judge instead of a jury,” Heard said.
Heard was also asked about the recorded arguments of their fights played during the trial. “This is in black and white. I understand context,” said Guthrie. “But you’re testifying, and you’re telling me today, ‘I never started a physical fight,’ and here you are on tape saying you did.”
“As I testified on the stand about this, is that when your life is at risk, not only will you take the blame for things that you shouldn’t take the blame for. But when you’re in an abusive dynamic, psychologically, emotionally and physically, you don’t have the resources that, say, you or I do, with the luxury of saying, ‘Hey, this is black and white,’” she said. “Because it’s anything but when you’re living in it.”
“Twenty-second clips or the transcripts of them are not representative of even the two hours or the three hours that those clips are excerpt[ed] from,” said Heard.
During the interview, Heard painted the trial as bigger than “Hollywood brats at their worst,” noting that, “It’s [the] freedom to speak truth to power.”
“But truth is the word. And that was the issue in the case,” countered Guthrie. “And that’s all I spoke. And I spoke it to power,” Heard replied. “And I paid the price.”
The second half of the interview will air on Wednesday, June 15 on NBC’s TODAY. The interview will also air Friday, June 17 on Dateline NBC 8 p.m. / 7 p.m. CT.
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