Amber Heard settles with Johnny Depp for $1 million: ‘I finally have an opportunity to emancipate myself’

The legal saga between actors and exes Johnny Depp and Amber Heard added one more chapter Monday as she sought to be both victor and victim with an “opportunity to emancipate” herself through the appeals process.

Back in June, the “Pirates of the Caribbean” actor was awarded a victory of roughly $10 million after seeking $50 million in a defamation suit against his ex-wife Heard who leveled claims of sexual abuse against him. Heard, who had been awarded $2 million for $100 million countersuit had vowed to appeal the verdict, but announced Monday that she and Depp, who also wished to appeal, had settled out of court.

In her first post to Instagram since the verdict just over six months ago, the “Aquaman” actress attempted to own the decision to payout $1 million, according to multiple outlets, rather than have to sit through another trial were her appeal actually granted.

“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,” Heard began the post that had racked up over 100,000 likes within three hours time.


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“It’s important for me to say that I never chose this. I defended my truth and in doing so my life as I knew it was destroyed,” she claimed despite knowing full well that the 2018 op-ed she penned for The Washington Post over which Depp filed his defamation suit had led to his getting blacklisted in Hollywood while her career continued.

“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. Now I finally have an opportunity to emancipate myself from something I attempted to leave over six years ago and on terms I can agree to,” Heard contended, noting the year that she had filed for divorce from Depp over irreconcilable differences.

Before bashing the American legal system, asserting her “unprotected testimony served as entertainment and social media fodder,” the 36-year-old actress made sure to assert her appeal was not to be considered an admission of guilt. “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.”

Heard went on to contend that Depp’s 2020 libel suit against UK outlet The Sun which referred to him as a “wife-beater” had been a victory for her, but in the Virginia court, “popularity and power mattered more than reason and due process.”

As had been the case throughout the highly viewed trial, social media users were ready to comment on Heard’s statement including one who pointed out what she saw as a number of fallacies in the “settlement” that doesn’t change the fact that Depp had won the trial by unanimous decision.

Perhaps knowing as much, Heard closed out her statement by writing, “Even if my US appeal is successful, the best outcome would be a re-trial where a new jury would have to consider the evidence again. I simply cannot go through that a third time.”


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Kevin Haggerty


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