No surprises here. Amber Heard didn’t have a lot to say about Johnny Depp’s appearance at the VMAs. A source close to the Aquaman star said that she wasn’t surprised at the cameo after her sister called out MTV on her Instagram.
A Hollywood Life report revealed that Amber wasn’t “particularly shocked” at all by Johnny’s appearance since she saw the rumors circulating around that he would appear on the iconic awards show. However, her sister Whitney “was furious over the whole thing and felt the need to say something.” The source said that Amber did appreciate her sister’s support and “really wasn’t surprised Whitney spoke up because she knows her sister will always have her back. Whitney still can’t believe Johnny is being placed on this pedestal and she feels awful for her sister.”
Whitney wrote on her Instagram on August 29, 2022, “@MTV you’re disgusting and clearly desperate! I really hope that none of the people that made this call have daughters…” She also posted on her Instagram stories a graphic of the VMAs with a “D” in front to spell out “DVMAS”, an abbreviation for “Domestic Violence Myth Acceptance Scale.” Johnny appeared on MTV’s Video Music Awards as the Moonman in a prerecording with his face superimposed on a model of the awards show mascot.
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Johnny won the defamation trial on June 1, 2022, after he sued Amber for $50 million. The trial was held due to an op-ed Amber wrote in The Washington Post in 2018 about her experiences with domestic abuse. No names were mentioned in the op-ed. However, many people speculated the article was about her marriage to Johnny, and he claimed that the op-ed cost him his acting jobs.
The jury ordered Amber to pay Johnny $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages for a total of $15 million. Due to the cap on punitive damages under Virginia state law, Judge Penney Azcarate reduced Amber’s punitive damages from $5 million to $350,000. Johnny, for his part, was found guilty of one count of defamation against Amber by the jury and was ordered to pay her $2 million in compensatory damages and zero dollars in punitive damages for a total of $2 million. If Johnny and Amber’s damages are netted against each other, Amber will have to pay Johnny a total of $8.35 million in damages, accounting for the $2 million in compensatory damages he owes her.
Amber and her lawyers tried to make a case for a mistrial due to a juror mishap. According to documents obtained by People, the lawyers state that “based on newly discovered facts and information that Juror No. 15 was not the individual summoned for jury duty on April 11, 2022.” They also attempted to throw away the verdict altogether where they claim that Johnny’s compensatory award was “excessive” and “indefensible.” However, the judge denied the mistrial.
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, help is available. Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-SAFE (7233) for confidential support.