Mutual friend's explosive testimony rocks Johnny Depp-Amber Heard trial

Friend said that Depp 'resented' being sober and was addicted to OxyContin

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On the night of their wedding, Johnny Depp said that, now that he and Amber Heard were married, he could “punch her in the face and no one could do anything about it”, a mutual friend testified on Tuesday.

Appearing before the court in a pre-recorded video deposition, iO Tillett Wright dropped several bombshells in the multimillion-dollar Depp v Heard lawsuit.

The actor is suing his ex-wife for $50 million in damages over an op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post in which she called herself a victim of domestic abuse. Though Heard did not mention Depp by name, he claims she was referring to him, and that he has lost work because of her allegations.

In his sworn testimony, Mr Wright said that he and Heard had met in 2011 through a mutual friend. He and Depp met in 2013.

“Johnny, when sober, was lovely and magical … when sober, he was lucid, funny and imaginative,” said Mr Wright.

He also said that “when sober”, Depp was generous and kind, offering his empty homes to people “that could have afforded to stay elsewhere”.

The two were friends until 2015, the year Heard filed for divorce, he said. Before that, Mr Wright was very close to Depp, at one point even living in one of the actor's homes in the Hollywood Hills.

After a dinner at Heard’s home, “Johnny came up to me and said, ‘I don’t really know how to say this because it doesn’t happen to me very often, but I think I love you’”, Mr Wright said.

However, he noted in his evidence that “alcohol would bring out a very ugly side of him”, which Depp acknowledged, and though he said it was “exhausting” to get sober, he had vowed to do so for Heard.

“But he resented it — he didn’t want to be [sober],” said Mr Wright.

Mr Wright said that Depp would try to seek advice from him about his relationship with Heard and would often bring up concerns of her cheating with her co-stars, which “she wasn’t”.

Mr Wright said that after dental surgery, Depp became addicted to OxyContin.

“He referred to it as the hardest thing he has ever tried to kick,” he said.

He added that Depp had a “marijuana closet” and that he witnessed the actor snort cocaine on numerous occasions — including a time in London with Marilyn Manson.

Depp expressed shame and regret about being so inebriated that he urinated on himself in front of his children, said Mr Wright.

Mr Wright testified that he witnessed Johnny Depp and Marilyn Manson do copious amounts of cocaine on a trip to London. AFP

“There was a time that he passed out on the sand in the Bahamas in front of his children and the staff whisked him away,” he said.

In May 2015, Mr Wright said he received a call from Heard. During the call, the two began to laugh, at which point Depp became angry. Mr Wright said that he heard a slap and “the phone dropped”. The he heard the actress scream.

He also said that Depp often talked about his mother, saying that she was “viciously cruel” and frequently called him many names. When Heard pleaded with Depp to get sober, he would compare the two.

“He said he already had one awful mother and that he didn't need another,” Mr Wright claimed Depp said in reference to Heard.

Updated: May 18, 2022, 8:31 PM
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