Amber Heard posted a carefree and confident shot on Instagram after ex-husband Johnny Depp failed to get her out of the defamation showdown next week.
The 34-year-old actress showed herself dressed in a relaxed floral dress as she lay on a picnic rug with a book, taking advantage of the sunny weather.
He uploaded the photo with the caption: “Relax on the weekend”.
It is not clear where the image was taken, but it is believed that he was in London before the three-week Supreme Court trial that is expected to begin in the capital on Tuesday.
Depp, 57, had attempted to prevent Heard from providing evidence in his libel action against The Sun newspaper and its executive director Dan Wooton on charges of being violent against him.
The document published an article in 2018 that refers to Depp as a ‘wife beater’, whom he denies strenuously.
In the last pre-hearing cross-section, Depp’s legal team on Friday tried to exclude Heard from the court until she was called by The Sun’s editor, News Group Newspapers (NGN) as a witness – which means that she would have been prevented from watching her ex-husband give evidence.
Depp’s attorney, Eleanor Laws QC, had argued that Heard’s evidence could later be less reliable if he were present during Depp’s testimony.
He also claimed that actress Heard was not a “party” in the litigation and therefore did not have to be in court before appearing as a witness.
But Judge Nicol refused to grant 57-year-old Depp’s request, paving the way for Heard, 34, to participate in the trial.
Ms. Heard, pictured today on Instagram, will be called to the High Court as a witness
The 57-year-old actor (left, in February) is suing the tabloid publisher News Group Newspapers and executive editor Dan Wootton for a 2018 article that referred to Depp as a “wife beater” . The article related to the allegations made against Depp by actress Heard (right, in December), 34, of having been violent towards him during their wedding – he says he strongly denies
In a court order issued yesterday, the judge said that excluding Heard from the hearing “would inhibit defendants from carrying out their defense.”
He noted that it was NGN and Wootton – not Ms Heard – who defended the complaint, but said they “rely heavily on the information that Ms. Heard can provide”.
She added: “She (Ms Heard) will not be able to issue instructions to NGN’s attorneys, but she can provide information on which the defendants can choose to act.
“There is an advantage for the defendants in being able to do so almost instantaneously during Depp’s cross-examination and, in my view, it would be unfair for the defendants to deprive them of that advantage.”
It came after NGN’s lawyers filed Depp’s application last week for the star’s inability to reveal the “drug texts in Australia” sent between the actor and his assistant, Nathan Holmes.
The couple met on the set of the 2011 comedy The Rum Diary and got married in Los Angeles in February 2015 (premiere pictured)
The messages, sent between late February and early March 2015 – just before an alleged accident between Depp and Heard, which claims to be “a three-day ordeal of physical assault” – showed that Depp was trying to get drugs while visiting Australia, Adam Wolanski QC said.
Wolanski said the Hollywood star was in “serious” violation of a court order by not giving the NGN legal team messages containing references to “happy pills” and “white stuff”.
The attorney even accused Depp and his attorneys of “a systematic attempt to pervert the course of justice” by deliberately refusing NGN’s documents – a claim that Depp’s attorney David Sherborne called “outrageous”.
Mr. Justice Nicol said on Monday that Depp had violated a ‘save order’ that required him to disclose documents from separate defamation proceedings against Ms. Heard in the United States – which include text messages.
Heard was nicknamed “Gone Girl” in one claim – a reference to the mystery novel of the same name – and was accused of “two extramarital affairs” with actor James Franco and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, reports Sunday Mirror.
The charges are denied by both Heard and Musk.
In a further Thursday ruling, the judge said he would accept Depp’s application for “exemption from penalties”, which means that the process will continue as planned.
The judge said his decision was conditional on Depp pledging not to seek sanctions against Heard for alleged violation of a court order issued during defamation proceedings in the United States, providing evidence to The Sun’s legal team.
Depp, 57, in one of his most famous roles in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series as the eccentric Captain Jack Sparrow
The alleged incident in Australia is one of 14 separate allegations of domestic violence between early 2013 and May 2016, which NGN relies on in its defense backed by Depp’s claim.
A three-week trial at the Royal Courts of Justice in London – expected to begin in March, but was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic – is expected to begin Tuesday, with former partners of Depp Vanessa Paradis and Winona Ryder among witnesses expected to provide evidence.
The court heard that Depp intends to travel from his home in France to London to provide evidence, while Heard is believed to have already traveled to the UK from California.
The accusation of defamation against NGN and Wootton stems from the publication of an article on The Sun in April 2018, under the title: ‘Gone Potty – How JK Rowling can be’ genuinely happy ‘in the role of the wife’s batsman Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts movie? ‘
Depp has initiated separate defamation proceedings against Heard in the United States, which the court heard being tried next year.
The couple met on the set of the 2011 comedy The Rum Diary and got married in Los Angeles in February 2015.
In May 2016, Heard obtained a restraining order against Depp after accusing him of abuse, which he denied.
The couple filed for divorce from the court in 2017, with Heard donating his settlement for seven million dollars (£ 5.5 million) to charity.