On Tuesday (11 October), attorneys for the Aquaman star filed an appellate brief to the Court of Appeals in Virginia, detailing 16 grounds for appeal, including a claim that the case should have been dismissed as it shouldn’t have taken place in northern Virginia.
The six-week, Spring defamation trial sided largely with Depp, awarding him $10m (£8m) in compensatory damages and $5m (£4m) in punitive damages. Depp sued Heard for implying he abused her in a 2018 op-ed for The Washington Post.
However, Heard was also awarded $2m (£1.6m) in her countersuit, finding that one of Depp’s attorneys had defamed her when he had branded her abuse allegations a “hoax”.
The four-page court document says that because both sides technically won, the verdict, therefore, is “inherently and irreconcilably inconsistent”.
Additionally, it argues that the 2020 UK libel verdict, which sided with Heard, should have been allowed into evidence.
It further criticises the basis of Depp’s case, saying the parts of the Washington Post op-ed he claimed defamed him were “actionable as statements of fact rather than non-actionable expressions of opinion” and “actionable as defamation by implication”.
Last month, Discovery+ released Johnny vs Amber: The US Trial, the first documentary detailing the former couple’s high-profile trial.
It was later announced that Fox’s Tubi would be releasing a movie with its own dramatised take on the case, with actor Mark Hapka Megan as Depp and Megan Davis (Alone in the Dark) cast as Heard.