Amber Heard as Queen Mera in Aquaman

#WeWantMera Trends as Fans Notice Amber Heard’s Conspicuous Absence From ‘Aquaman’ 2 Marketing

Amber Heard has been conspicuously absent from Warner Bros.’ marketing for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. Now, fans are speaking up through a social media campaign, #WeWantMera, to tell the studio exactly what they want.

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Heard is set to reprise her role as Queen Mera in Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. However, her upcoming performance has been tainted by her ex-husband Johnny Depp’s defamation lawsuit against her, which saw Heard become the victim of a vicious smear campaign from his followers. Depp accused Heard of defamation because she identified as an abuse survivor in an op-ed for The Washington Post. Despite a previous U.K. court ruling that Heard’s allegations were substantially true, Depp was permitted to sue Heard for defamation. She then countersued Depp, and a highly publicized court battle ensued.

Both Heard and Depp were found to have “defamed” each other. However, it’s unclear how fair of a trial she received due to Depp’s fans formulating a widespread smear campaign against her. They spread misinformation about the case, harassed witnesses, tried to destroy the careers of anyone who approached the case without bias, and made death threats against Heard’s supporters. Although the case did not prove the things Depp’s unhinged fans have claimed about Heard, they have still destroyed her reputation with those claims.

Fortunately, supporters of Heard have slowly started feeling brave enough to voice their support publicly. Supporters had a good reason to be cautious, given the threats of violence from Depp’s fans. However, an open letter of support from multiple feminist organizations, and Gen V siding with Heard, have made supporters feel safer, knowing they have powerful platforms backing them. Now, they are getting even more vocal in their support.

The fans have spoken, and they want Mera

Amber Heard in Aquaman (2018)
(Warner Bros.)

Fans are not happy that Heard has been absent from Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom’s marketing. In the first official trailer, she appears only for a brief second. In the second trailer, she doesn’t appear at all. What’s incredibly bizarre is that both trailers dedicate a good portion to Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and his son—who he has with Mera. It really makes no sense for Aquaman to be experiencing fatherhood alone, without his wife and the mother of his child being anywhere in sight.

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom director James Wan offered a feeble excuse for Heard’s absence from marketing and her alleged reduced role in the film, reiterating past claims that the sequel was never going to focus on Mera. However, Warner Bros. had admitted to considering recasting Heard at one point because of a supposed lack of chemistry with Momoa. It seems like the studio wouldn’t have considered taking this route and going through the hassle of recasting her if it knew she would barely be in the film all along. So, many suspect that Warner Bros. and Wan are simply bowing to the desires of Depp’s fans. After all, notes from Heard’s therapist allege that Wan had been complaining that he couldn’t even post about the film without Depp’s rabid fans inundating it with hatred and harassment.

Of course, giving Depp’s fans what they want is not the way to go. Warner Bros. should not be punishing Heard for these people’s harassment, and it should not set an example that tells misogynist trolls that they can interfere with ongoing court cases and make death threats to get their way. Shortly after the second trailer premiered with no Heard, #WeWantMera started trending on X (formerly Twitter). Fans used the hashtag to express their desire to see Queen Mera in the film and marketing, as well as to criticize Warner Bros. for failing to stand behind the actress.

It remains to be seen if Warner Bros. will publicly respond to the outcry. The traction this campaign is getting reiterates that fans are not satisfied with the feeble excuses they have received so far for Heard’s absence. Additionally, the campaign is raising an important conversation about whether supporters of Heard should support Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. On the one hand, Heard’s role is significant, no matter how small, because it is one tiny victory against Depp’s fans. On the other hand, if Warner Bros. continues proving it does not support survivors of domestic abuse and does everything just short of removing Heard completely, perhaps the film shouldn’t be supported.

Warner Bros. certainly has a mess on its hands with Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom. Depp’s fans are so hateful and misogynistic that even the mere thought of Heard sends them into a frenzy. They’re not going to watch the film even if Heard’s role is hidden and reduced. However, Warner Bros. is now turning away the only people who were going to show up: Heard’s supporters. The social media campaign suggests the majority of those planning to watch Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom want to see Queen Mera and to make a powerful statement of support to survivors of abuse and their right to a fair trial.

If Warner Bros. doesn’t do anything to respond to this fan campaign, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom will be in trouble. Perhaps the tides are turning, and Hollywood’s history of supporting abusive men rather than survivors of abuse is going to come back to haunt it when Aquaman’s sequel flops because we want Mera.

(featured image: Warner Bros.)

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Rachel Ulatowski
Rachel Ulatowski is a Staff Writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, literature, and celebrity news. She has over three years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant, JustWatch, and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.