Highlights

  • Jury finds both parties libel but awards Depp a larger chunk of damages
  • Depp to be paid $15 million in damages

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'Jury gave my life back': Johnny Depp talks of 'new life' in first reaction to verdict

Depp filed a $50 million defamation suit against Heard, alleging that a 2018 op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post damaged his reputation and hurt his career.

Actor Johnny Depp quickly responded to the verdict in the libel lawsuit Wednesday. Moments after it was released, he posted a statement to his Instagram account in two slides.

The "Pirates of the Caribbean" actor explained that his life, his children, and others close to him were "forever changed" six years ago.

"False, very serious and criminal allegations were levied at me via the media, which triggered an endless barrage of hateful content," said Depp, "although no charges were ever brought against me. It had already traveled around the world twice within a nanosecond and it had a seismic impact on my life and my career."

Depp filed a $50 million defamation suit against Heard, alleging that a 2018 op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post damaged his reputation and hurt his career.

In the article, Heard described herself as ``a public figure representing domestic abuse.'' Depp was not mentioned by name in the article, but his lawyers argued that it was clear she was referring to Depp, given that she had publicly accused him of domestic violence during their 2016 divorce proceedings.

He said "the jury gave me my life back" when the seven jurors decided to award Depp $15 million in damages, while finding that Heard's counterclaim had merits too, awarding her $2 million in damages.

The "Edward Scissorhands" actor said he pursued the case after "considerable thought" knowing that it would mean "the inevitable, worldwide spectacle into my life."

Depp stated he was prepared for either outcome.

"Speaking the truth was something that I owed to my children and to all those who have remained steadfast in their support of me," Depp said.

In his statement, he also thanked the judge, jurors, court staff, sheriffs and his legal team for their support during the six-week trial.

Depp closed his statement with, "The best is yet to come and a new chapter has finally begun."

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