Johnny Depp will join Jeff Beck for the rest of his UK tour
Hollywood star Johnny Depp will join rock guitarist Jeff Beck for the rest of his UK tour, it has been announced. Depp, 58, who earlier this week won his multimillion-dollar defamation lawsuit in the United States against his ex-wife Amber Heard, 36, had already surprised audiences and fans when he joined Beck on stage in Sheffield and at the Royal Albert Hall in London.
The actor, who previously collaborated with Beck on 2020’s Isolation, will now perform in Gateshead, Glasgow, Manchester, Birmingham and York. Depp sued the Aquaman Heard star for $50 million over a 2018 op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post, titled: ‘I spoke out against sexual violence – and faced anger of our culture. This must change.
Leading reputation management lawyer Mark Stephens said he believed the actor and Heard had both created “indelible stains” on their careers. Mr Stephens, a partner at Howard Kennedy and a reputation management expert, who was not involved in the case, told the PA news agency: ‘I think they both have indelible marks , this is a major problem for people who make a living from their reputation.”
In 2020, Depp brought a similar libel claim in UK court against The Sun newspaper over an article that called him a “wife beater”. However, in this case, Judge Nicol dismissed the Pirates of the Caribbean star’s claim, saying News Group Newspapers (NGN) had proven what was in the article to be “substantially true”, which was later proven. upheld by the Court of Appeal.
Mr Stephens noted that initially he felt Depp got out of the US court case “before” Heard, given the financial and reputational damage. The US case was streamed live online, making it a trending topic on social media platforms.
The lawyer said his theory of different outcomes is based on the fact that the UK case was decided by a judge while the US case was decided by a jury. He explained that in both countries the same legal device called DARVO was applied, where lawyers deny the allegations, attack the reputation of the victim, then reverse the roles saying that the accused is the perpetrator and vice versa.
Mr Stephens said: ‘Judges pay attention to it and juries don’t, so it works with juries most of the time. I think they were ill-advised to bring the case and I said that from the start because nobody shows up at their best when a relationship breaks up.
After the verdict, Heard said she was “heartbroken” but “even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women.” She added that Depp’s lawyers managed to get the jury members to “forget” about free speech.
“I am sad to have lost this case. But I’m even sadder to have lost a right I thought I had as an American: to speak freely and openly,” she said.