In the second day of Amber Heard’s evidence in Johnny Depp’s libel action, we have heard details about Elon Musk and James Franco.
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Amber Heard has denied having affairs during her relationship with Johnny Depp, as details of texts with Elon Musk and CCTV of her and actor James Franco were shown at the High Court.
She also answered further questions about her allegations of domestic abuse against Depp, telling the court she was his “punching bag” and that: “He was twice my size and beat me up for years.”
Giving evidence for a second day during the Pirates Of The Caribbean star’s libel action against the publishers of The Sun, with the hearing now in its third week, Heard also claimed she had been told Depp pushed his ex-girlfriend Kate Moss down some stairs.
In an extraordinary revelation, Heard admitted striking Depp on one occasion and told the court it was because she believed the actor was going to push her sister, Whitney, down some stairs – and said she thought he had done this before.
During her first day in the witness box on Monday, the actress said she “loved Johnny” but was “terrified of the monster”, and in a statement submitted to the trial claimed she feared the actor was “going to kill” her on several occasions during their tempestuous relationship.
She also gave details of Depp’s “jealousy” in her witness statement, claiming the actor was jealous about her male co-stars and other actors she had auditioned with, including Leonardo DiCaprio, James Franco and Eddie Redmayne.
On Tuesday, Eleanor Laws QC, representing Depp, questioned Heard more on this issue, and the actress denied having any affairs while she was with the actor.
The barrister then read out text messages between Heard and billionaire Space X and Tesla founder Elon Musk – who has been mentioned a few times during the hearing – on 22 May 2016, the day after the last of 14 incidents when Heard alleges Depp was violent towards her.
In the texts, Heard tells Musk that she is going to obtain a restraining order against Depp.
Musk offers to “arrange 24/7 security” for the actress, the court is told, and adds: “The offer would stand, even if you never wanted to see me again… anyway, sorry for being an idiot. The radio silence hurts a lot. It only matters because I really like you.”
Ms Laws then referred to evidence given earlier in the hearing by Alejandro Romero, a concierge at the Eastern Columbia building in Los Angeles, where Depp owned several penthouses, who claimed he saw Musk visiting Heard when Depp was away in 2015.
“He’s wrong,” Heard said in court. “I wasn’t even in communication with Elon until 2016.”
Ms Laws responded: “Time and again, you have accused [Depp] of being jealous, but we can see here you are in communication with someone. Were you telling Mr Depp about this?”
The judge, Mr Justice Nicol, then intervened, and Ms Laws moved on to claims about Heard and Franco, who she starred alongside in 2015 film The Adderall Diaries.
“On the topic of what you say about [Depp’s] jealousy, you mentioned in your statement that James Franco was someone that Mr Depp was accusing you of having an affair with and he was quite wrong about it,” Ms Laws said.
“That’s right,” Heard replied.
The court was then shown CCTV footage of Heard travelling downstairs in the lift at the Eastern Columbia Building, also on 22 May 2016 at around 11pm, before travelling back upstairs shortly after with Franco.
When asked by Ms Laws if she was trying to avoid being seen by the camera, Heard replied: “We were talking. He was saying to me, ‘oh my god, what happened to you?’
“He saw my face… when I let him in. He saw my face and he said, ‘what the f***?'”
Ms Laws asked: “That’s not secretive talking on that camera?”
Ms Heard replied: “Yes, it’s discreet.”
Amber Heard's side of the story: Key bits of witness statement
Later on in the morning session, Ms Laws put it to Heard that she had been violent to Depp during their relationship.
Heard told the court the actor “surrounded himself with people who wouldn’t disagree with him” and that his “perception of our relationship was so skewed” he didn’t realise how bad things were.
The actress said it is “preposterous” that Depp says he was the victim of violence, and told the court: “He was twice my size and beat me up for five years… I wanted him to stop calling me a liar, but here we are four years later.”
Heard alleges Depp was first violent in early 2013 and they broke up just over three years later, in May 2016. It is not clear whether the “five years” referred to in court was a mistake.
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Depp and Heard met while working on the 2011 film The Rum Diary and began living together in 2012 before marrying in Los Angeles in February 2015.
Heard obtained a domestic violence restraining order against the actor in LA shortly after the couple split in 2016 and later donated her $7m (£5.5 million) divorce settlement to charity.
Mr Depp is suing NGN and The Sun’s executive editor Dan Wootton over the publication of an article on 27 April 2018, with the headline: “Gone Potty: How can JK Rowling be ‘genuinely happy’ casting wife beater Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts film?”
NGN is defending the article as true.
The trial continues.