Hollywood’s ugliest “hit” is coming to an end — with a cliff-hanger.
Johnny Depp’s explosive libel trial is due to hear closing arguments this week — with the Hollywood star and his actress ex Amber Heard still accusing each other of disturbing acts of violence.
London’s High Court is expected to wrap up the final testimony over Monday and Tuesday in the 57-year-old actor’s lawsuit against The Sun newspaper over a 2018 article calling him a “wife beater.”
The judge, Mr. Justice Nicol, will then take time to consider his ruling — leaving the case in a real-life cliff-hanger as to when his decision will be announced.
Despite no cameras inside the courtroom, the tawdry testimony has rivaled any reality TV show — and gripped celebrity watchers at a time when Hollywood is at a halt due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Along with disturbing accusations of violence, plotlines include numerous alleged celebrity affairs, threesomes, the loss of $750 million, drug-taking by dogs and young daughters — and even marriage-ending poop attacks.
It also featured a stellar support cast of A-listers — with Elon Musk, Leonardo DiCaprio, James Franco, Channing Tatum, Eddie Redmayne, Jim Sturgess, Kevin Costner, Liam Hemsworth and Billy-Bob Thornton all named as stars Depp was paranoid his wife was cheating with.
Depp was first to take the stand when the case opened on July 7 to vehemently deny 14 allegations of domestic violence used by The Sun’s legal team to justify its “wife beater” claim.
His legal team accused Heard of faking photos of bruises, with Depp calling some of her detailed allegations “pedestrian fiction” — accusing his “sociopathic” ex of the violence and trying to set him up in a “choreographed hoax.”
Heard, however, later claimed Depp threatened to kill her “many times,” saying he would blame his actions on a “self-created third party” he called “the monster.”
They included a “three-day hostage situation” during which Depp started picking up empty booze bottles and “throwing them like grenades” at her, Heard told the court.
It ended with Depp completely severing a fingertip — using the blood to scrawl messages about his wife across mirrors in a rented home in Australia, he admitted to the court, blaming his wife for the gruesome injury that left him with MRSA.
The couple, who met during auditions for 2011’s “The Rum Diary,” was already having volatile fights before their marriage in February 2015 on Depp’s private island in the Bahamas, they both agreed.
They even had a “terrible fight” during their honeymoon on an Eastern & Oriental Express train ride through Southeast Asia during which Heard claimed she woke with her husband’s “shirt wrapped around my neck,” the court was told.
Depp vehemently denied ever striking his ex — or any woman — but conceded their heads may have once clashed when he tried to hold her back from attacking him.
Heard, meanwhile, admitted she once punched the actor — but only to stop him pushing her sister down some stairs like she heard he once did to supermodel ex Kate Moss, she told the court.
Either way, the decay of their marriage was spelled out in graphic detail, with Depp admitting they had agreed it was “a crime scene waiting to happen.”
Aside from the violence, the case has also thrown into sharp focus Depp’s fall from grace — with him detailing his fight with drug addiction, even calling himself a “poor old junkie” while going through detox.
Depp even admitted to giving daughter Lily-Rose pot when she was just 13, claiming he was being a “responsible parent.” Another time, he allegedly went on a 24-hour drug bender with rocker Marilyn Manson after dropping off Lily-Rose at school.
He also detailed how one of Heard’s Yorkshire Terriers, Boo, ate about an ounce of the drug in front of him — but dismissed as an “utter falsity” claims that he held her other dog, Pistol, out of the window of a speeding car.
The grossest moment came when the court was shown photos of poop left in Depp’s bed following a fight after Heard’s 30th birthday. The actress denied being responsible — but Depp said it was the moment he finally decided to dump her.
It was not the only bodily waste involved — with Depp also accused of trying to write Heard’s name in pee during one attack.
The only disappointment for celeb watchers was the last-minute decision not to call Depp’s celebrity exes Winona Ryder and Vanessa Paradis. Each instead gave glowing testimonials in witness statements claiming Depp had never been violent during their combined 18 years with him.
No matter the outcome of the case, many insiders believe it could halt similar libel claims from celebrities who will be horrified at the graphic details being aired.
“I think the legal action has backfired in many ways,” celebrity journalist Sandro Monetti said. “Win or lose the case, I think Johnny is damaged in his career. And I don’t think Amber Heard has come out of it smelling of roses either.”
Crisis PR expert Evan Nierman also said Depp has not “done himself any favors” with the court action.
“I’m not sure the juice is worth the squeeze,” he said. “I’m not sure putting himself through the wringer like this accomplishes his goal.”
Still, he believes Depp could bounce back easier than his ex-wife.
“People have known Johnny Depp and thought that he’s a wild man for a long time,” Nierman said.
“Whereas now, our introduction on a grand scale to Amber Heard doesn’t paint a particularly pretty picture.
“So I think it’s actually likely to have more damage to her career than his, because he’s already on the tail end of a great run.”
With Post wires
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