The 30-minute phone conversation, published by The Daily Mail today, was recorded from Depp’s side after Heard, 33, filed for divorce and applied for a restraining order against the “abusive” Pirates of the Caribbean star.
In it, Depp, 56, pleads with the actress to settle their dispute out of court and complains that she is destroying his reputation, as they argue over who was responsible for the violence that marred their toxic marriage.
“You are f***ing killing me,” the father-of-two says. “You’ve turned me into a … my boy goes to school and has kids go, ‘So your f***ing dad’s a wife beater?’ You don’t think about that, Amber.”
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As they argue, Heard insists that she feared for her life and recounts how she was told by Depp’s security guards “multiple times that I am going to get killed”.
She refers to an incident in Australia one month into their marriage in which the top of Depp’s finger was severed. He claims the injury was caused by Heard throwing a vodka bottle at him, while she maintains that he did it himself while “drunk and high on ecstasy”.
“I’m sorry because the last time it got crazy between us I really did think I was gonna lose my life,” she says. “And I thought you would do it on accident. And I told you that.”
JD: “I had a can of mineral spirit thrown at my nose!”
AH: “Go and tell the world that I, Johnny Depp, am a victim of domestic violence and see how many people believe you.”
Amber Heard is pure evil.
— Elle-Rose 🍁 (@AutumnOnVenus) February 6, 2020
Depp replies, “Amber, I lost a f***ing finger man, c’mon. I had a f***ing, I had a f***ing mineral can, a jar, a can of mineral spirits thrown at my nose.”
Heard replies, “You can please tell people that it was a fair fight, and see what the jury and judge thinks. Tell the world Johnny, tell them Johnny Depp, I, Johnny Depp, a man, I’m a victim too of domestic violence. And I, you know, it’s a fair fight. And see how many people believe or side with you.”
Depp says, “It doesn’t matter – fair fight my a**.”
Heard continues, “Exactly, because you’re big, you’re bigger and you’re stronger. And so when I say that I thought that you could kill me, that doesn’t mean you counter with you also lost your own finger. I, I’m not trying to attack you here, I’m just trying to point out the fact of why I said call 911.
“Because I was, you had your hands on me after you threw a phone at my face. And it’s got crazy in the past, and I truly thought I need to stop this madness before I get hurt.”
Depp simply responds, “Oh my God”, before reminding her that she will have to repeat her allegations under oath in court. “Do you believe all this, Amber? Do you believe all this?” he asks.
She replies, “Yes, the f**k, yes, yes.”
He asks, “Do you believe you’re an abuser? Do you believe you abused me physically?”
She says, “Do you know I’m a 115, well not anymore, but I was a 115-pound, almost 115-pound woman. Have I ever been able to knock you off of your feet? Or knock you off balance?
“You’re going to get up on the stand, Johnny, and say, ‘She started it’? Really? I have never been able to overpower you that’s the difference between me and you … and that’s a difference, that’s a whole world, and there’s a jury and there’s a judge will see that there’s a very big difference between me and you.”
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The pair ultimately did agree to settle out of court for $US7 million, with Heard retracting her claims and issuing a joint statement in August 2016 that there was “never any intent of physical or emotional harm”.
But things broke down in December 2018 when Heard penned an op-ed in The Washington Post about her experience as an alleged domestic violence victim. Depp filed a $US50 million defamation lawsuit last year, claiming the piece cost him his lucrative role as Captain Jack Sparrow.
Heard then responded with her own 300-page filing detailing the allegedly “horrific” abuse she suffered at Depp’s hands, describing him as “the monster” who often became “delusional and violent” when abusing drugs and alcohol.
The latest audio leak comes days after The Daily Mail published a recording from 2015 in which Heard admits to “hitting” Depp, warning she “can’t promise you I won’t get physical again” and likening herself to an “animal” being poked and lashing out.
Lawyers for the two sides have offered radically different interpretations of the latest recording. “Ms Heard delivers a chilling message to Johnny Depp any real abuse survivor will instantly recognise — nobody will believe you, so you better do what I want,” Depp’s lawyer Adam Waldman told The Daily Mail. “Ms Heard may continue to masquerade as a ‘survivor’ but the audiotape speaks for itself.”
But Heard’s lawyers said the tape showed she “repeatedly makes it clear to Mr Depp that he was physically violent and abusive, that she feared for her life” and that “not once on the tape does he deny Ms Heard’s statements about his violent attacks and the damage they caused, including her broken nose and black eyes”.