May 24 (UPI) — An entertainment industry consultant testified Monday that actor Johnny Depp‘s claims that his ex-wife Amber Heard fabricated allegations of abuse against him derailed the actress’ career.
Kathy Arnold told the court that Heard has lost out on movie, television and endorsement deals since Adam Waldman, Depp’s former attorney, publicly called her allegations that she suffered abuse during their marriage “false” and a “hoax.”
Depp is suing Heard for defamation while seeking $50 million in damages over a 2018 Washington Post op-ed in which she described herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse” despite not mentioning him by name. Heard then filed a $100 million countersuit following Waldman’s comments about her allegations.
“It is very likely that Ms. Heard should have earned $45 to $50 million over that time period,” she said.
Arnold said Heard’s role in the 2018 film “Aquaman” should have been her “Star is Born moment” saying that her career trajectory should have been similar to actresses such as Ana de Armas, Zendaya and Gal Gadot.
“It would have been very reasonable to believe her career would have been on an upward trajectory of those other actors,” she said.
Arnold also testified that Depp’s career had already been on the decline before Heard’s op-ed.
She noted he had starred in multiple films that underperformed at the box office including “The Lone Ranger” (2013), “Alice Through the Looking Glass” (2016) and “Mortdecai” (2015), while reports of poor work habits also cost him roles.
“Well, we talked about the erratic behavior, the tardiness, the drugs and alcohol abuse,” Arnold said. “And the lawsuits have had a really big impact, not just this lawsuit but previous lawsuits that Mr. Depp has been involved with because there’s a lot of publicity around anything he does.”
Heard’s legal team also called psychiatrist Dr. David R. Spiegel who testified that Depp was driven by “narcissistic insult” to file the lawsuit in an attempt to lash out at Heard.
“To some degree this whole trial is that, in terms of narcissism, narcissistic insult is what’s going on,” Spiegel said. “I believe that Mr. Depp was very much a mainstay, appropriately, in Hollywood and then this pulled the rug out.”
He added that Depp displayed five of nine narcissistic personality traits, including needing admiration from others, displayed moments of entitlement, lack of empathy, envy and a fragile sense of self-esteem.
“Mr. Depp requires admiration from the very people that surround him … or they’re no longer in his employment or his working circle,” said Spiegel.
Spiegel said that he believed substance use has slowed Depp’s “processing speed” and caused him to have a lack of impulse control.
He added that Depp is able to control himself under normal circumstances but chronic use of drugs and alcohol has led to adverse behavior.
“I think Mr. Depp was able to control much of his behavior,” he said. “Much of his thinking, even if it was abhorrent or negative, he’s able to control that. I think that once you start getting to the point of adding substances to that, that will set it over.”
He also contradicted testimony by Dr. Shannon Curry, an expert in intimate partner violence hired by Depp’s legal team, that Heard had borderline personality disorder, instead saying she suffered from “battered wife syndrome” or “battered person syndrome” — a type of post-traumatic stress disorder.
He further said that Depp has “consistent behaviors for someone who is a perpetrator of intimate partner violence.”
Depp’s legal team countered that Spiegel was not qualified to make such an assessment as none of his published works touch on the topic of intimate partner violence and he had not spoken with Depp.
Spiegel said he had requested to speak with Depp twice and was denied.
Moore testified that he reviewed photos and medical records, as well as Depp’s testimony of how he sustained the injury, and determined that based on his description he would have sustained more damage to his fingernail and the surrounding tissue.
“The medical data is inconclusive,” Moore said. “It’s not consistent with what we see in the described injury pattern. … The description was the hand being flat on the bar and the bottle crushing the finger from the top. But looking at the images, there’s really no significant injury to the dorsal of the finger and created the type of injury … we would anticipate both injury to the fingernail and other parts of the finger.”