Whether you live for celebrity drama or can’t think of anything more mind-numbing, the drawn-out and highly publicised defamation trial between Johnny Depp and former spouse Amber Heard was one of the biggest stories of 2022. Now Depp, who walked away with a hefty payout, has revealed his kindhearted plans for the funds.
Johnny Depp has had a career that dreams are made of, starring in countless iconic movies like Donnie Brasco or Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, as well as one of the highest-grossing franchises in living memory: Pirates Of The Caribbean. And yet, what better proof could there be that no one’s life is truly perfect than the trial he endured last year?
Dredging up the very darkest and filthiest moments with ex-spouse Amber Heard — infamously revealing that Heard defecated in Depp’s bed by way of a dirty protest in which, we imagine, she never intended the wider world to partake — the trial dominated the news cycle for months before both parties walked away with sizeable payouts.
WATCH: One of Depp’s less philanthropic investments… his private island.
In a smart bit of PR, Depp has revealed today that he plans to donate $1 million USD ($1.48 million AUD) of that settlement to a selection of deserving charitable organisations, as disclosed by sources close to the actor. Among the chosen recipients are the Make-A-Film Foundation, The Painted Turtle, Red Feather, Marlon Brando’s Tetiaroa Society, and the Amazonia Fund Alliance. Depp intends to give $200,000 USD to each.
This follows a ruling by a Virginia jury in June 2022, which held both Johnny Depp and Amber Heard accountable for defamation. Despite the gruesome legal proceedings, the couple managed to reach a settlement in December, with Heard agreeing to pay Depp $1 million in damages. As part of the amicable resolution, Depp expressed his desire to give the funds towards charitable causes.
Initially, the Virginia jury awarded Depp $10 million USD in compensatory damages, along with an additional $5 million USD in punitive damages. Meanwhile, Heard received $2 million USD in compensatory damages but was not granted any punitive damages. Ultimately, the amount owed by Heard to Depp was reduced to $1 million when the settlement agreement was reached.
Upon announcing the settlement on Instagram, Heard was quick to clarify that she did not admit any wrongdoing and underscored that the agreement was not an act of concession. She candidly expressed her loss of faith in the American legal system, highlighting the adverse impact the trial had on her personal life. Meanwhile, Depp’s legal representatives Camille Vasquez and Benjamin Chew expressed their immense satisfaction with the resolution.
More recently, both Depp and Heard have been spotted in Europe, presumably looking to move on from the rigmarole of the trial on sun-soaked shores. Depp’s philanthropic gesture seems to be made in much the same vein: though it’s undoubtedly a generous way to spend his payout, it doesn’t represent a monumental change of ethos or lifestyle for Depp, whose net worth sits at a comfortable $150 million USD.
More than anything, it seems that Depp doesn’t want dirty money in his bank account, preferring to wash his hands of the whole affair instead. Given Heard’s track record, he’d be remiss not to give the bedsheets a quick soak too…