Despite Vicious Online Campaign, Amber Heard Will Return for Aquaman 2
Heard has been the subject of relentless smear campaigns by angry Johnny Depp fans and Depp himself.
Few actresses have endured relentless online bullying and smear campaigns like Amber Heard. These attacks from a vocal group of staunch Johnny Depp stans has led to a petition (with nearly 2 million signatures) to remove her from Aquaman 2. Luckily, online petitions mean nothing, and Warner Bros. is standing by Heard. In an appearance on Deadline‘s Hero Nation podcast, Aquaman producer Peter Safran said, “I don’t think we’re ever going to react to, honestly, pure fan pressure. You gotta do what’s best for the movie. We felt that if it’s [director] James Wan and [star] Jason Momoa, it should be Amber Heard. That’s really what it was.”
Safran added, “One is not unaware of what is going on in the Twitter-verse, but that doesn’t mean you have to react to it or take it as gospel or accede to their wishes. You have to do what’s right for the film, and that’s really where we landed on it.” Heard also confirmed she was returning for the sequel, telling Entertainment Weekly, “I’m super excited about the amount of fan love and the amount of fan appreciation that Aquaman has acquired and that it has garnered so much excitement for Aquaman and Mera that it means we’ll be coming back, … I’m so excited to film that.”
Heard continued, “Paid rumors and paid campaigns on social media don’t dictate [casting decisions] because they have no basis in reality, … Only the fans actually made Aquaman and Aquaman 2 happen. I’m excited to get started next year.”
Not only has Heard endured the attacks from his stans, but her ex-husband Johnny Depp tried to use his influence to get Heard fired from the first Aquaman movie. According to Tatiana Siegel’s exposé in the Hollywood Reporter, Depp told his sister, producer Christi Dembrowski, “I want her replaced on the WB film.” During his high stake libel lawsuit against British tabloid The Sun, Depp admitted that he was referring to Aquaman.
Depp ultimately lost his libel suit against The Sun, after a London High Court Judge Andrew Nicol ruled that Depp had repeatedly assaulted his former partner and put her in fear for her life. “I have found that the great majority of alleged assaults of Ms Heard by Mr Depp have been proved to the civil standard,” said Nicol. “The claimant has not succeeded in his action for libel.”
This resulted in Depp being asked to leave his role as Grindelwald in the Fantastic Beasts films, and will be replaced by Mads Mikkelsen.
Ever since they first got together on the set of The Rum Diary, rabid Depp fans have attacked Heard, labelling her a “gold digger” and an abuser as well, blaming her for defending herself. As our own Princess Weekes wrote, “It is easier to make Amber Heard, a less beloved actress and young bisexual woman, the malevolent “femme fatale” and orchestrator of his doom like some Isabella of France, than to admit that his behavior, ego, vanity, and thirst for revenge has led him down a destructive path of his own making.”
As Depp’s self-immolation continues, Amber Heard continues to thrive. She is training for Aquaman 2 and recently welcomed a daughter. But next year will see Heard and Depp in court once more, as Depp has filed a $50M defamation suit. Heard has responded with a $100M countersuit, and two are scheduled to go to trial in April 2022.
(via Deadline, image: Warner Bros.)
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