Johnny Depp's agent reveals how Amber Heard "destroyed" the star

Fairfax, Virginia - Johnny Depp lost out on tens of millions of dollars in movie roles – including for Pirates of the Caribbean 6 – after Amber Heard accused him of domestic violence, according to his talent manager.

Johnny Depp's defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard is now in its fourth week.
Johnny Depp's defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard is now in its fourth week.  © REUTERS

Heard’s December 2018 Washington Post op-ed was "catastrophic" and "destroyed" Depp’s career, talent manager Jack Whigham testified on video Monday amid their ongoing defamation trial, which is now in its fourth week.

Before the allegations, Depp was working steadily, Whigham said, rattling off a string of movies beginning in October 2016 when he joined the team:

  • City of Lies – $8 million
  • Murder on the Orient Express – $10 million
  • Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald – $13.5 million
  • Waiting for the Barbarians –$1 million
  • Minamata – $3 million
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After the op-ed, financing fell apart on Minamata, which starred Depp as photojournalist Eugene Smith and was due to start filming in 2019. The 58-year-old apparently ended up waiving some of his salary to get the independent film across the finish line.

Then Disney ditched him for the planned Pirates sequel, which was supposed to net Depp $22.5 million, according to Whigham. During cross-examination, the manager admitted that he had never affirmatively seen that number "written on a page."

"After the op-ed, it was impossible to get him a studio film," Whigham testified.

Disney's trouble with Depp

Depp's talent manager, Jack Whigham, testified via video.
Depp's talent manager, Jack Whigham, testified via video.  © REUTERS

Last week, Depp said Disney was "trying to cut ties to be safe" by kicking him off the movie franchise in which he played Captain Jack Sparrow.

"They didn’t remove my character from the rides," he testified. "They didn’t stop selling dolls of Captain Jack Sparrow. They didn’t stop selling anything. They just didn’t want there to be something trailing behind me that they’d find."

Heard’s team has argued that Depp was already on the outs with Disney for his drug and alcohol problems while filming Dead Men Tell No Tales in 2015.

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"It was trending badly in the late fall on behalf of Disney," Whigham testified. "But Jerry Bruckheimer and I were lobbying to make it happen, and so we had hope. And it became clear to me in early 2019 that it was over."

Pirates 6 has still not been made and it’s unclear if it ever will be.

Heard's stream of abuse

Amber Heard (2nd from r.) previously admitted to hitting her former husband.
Amber Heard (2nd from r.) previously admitted to hitting her former husband.  © REUTERS

In earlier testimony Monday, Depp’s security guard, Travis McGivern, told the Fairfax, Virginia, jury that he saw Heard throw a can of Red Bull at the actor in March 2015 at their Los Angeles home, then later that evening allegedly heard her punch him with a "closed fist" to the face.

That night, McGivern testified, Heard spat at Depp and called him names, including a "deadbeat dad," a "f***ing c***" and "f***ing washed up."

During the London trial in which Depp unsuccessfully sued The Sun for calling him a wife-beater , Heard admitted to punching Depp that night, but said it was to protect her sister, Whitney, who was with her at the time.

"I had heard that he had pushed a former girlfriend, I think it was Kate Moss, down the stairs," Heard testified in July 2020. "And I thought of that at the moment and I reacted in defense of [Whitney]."

During his own testimony in this trial, Depp denied ever hitting Heard.

Cover photo: Collage: REUTERS

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