Amber Heard has been under fire lately, with calls to have the actress ousted from her upcoming role in Aquaman 2. The backlash timing mirrors that of ex-husband Johnny Depp, who has been canned from a couple of his own movies for his own conduct. While Depp won’t be returning to the Warner Bros. lot any time soon, Heard is still locked into her current role with the studio, with Warner Bros. essentially ignoring the online campaigns. Recent reports even suggest that the calls and numbers pushing for her to be fired could be fake, or at least artificially inflated from various dark corners of the internet.
Representatives from Warner Bros. and Amber Heard herself don’t seem to be putting much credence into the online campaigns calling for her firing. Both are suggesting that the increase in numbers and the online personas are just the work of troll farms, which Heard has even gone as far as to suggest that the smear campaigns are the work of Depp himself, or at least partially being funded by him. It’s just another chapter in a crazy and troubling story of these former couple’s twisted relationship.
The issues between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard really started to spill out into the public sphere over the summer, when Depp was locked into a legal battle with the British tabloid The Sun. He had filed a defamation suit against the paper when they called him a “wife-beater” during his marriage to Amber Heard. When filing the suit, the tabloid was then forced to prove the allegations were true to avoid being charged with libel. They were successful, detailing a disturbing set of behavior from Depp that included drug and alcohol abuse, as well as verbal and physical abuse towards Heard. Depp lost the suit and things spiraled even further downward.
In the aftermath of The Sun legal proceedings, Johnny Depp was fired from his role as Gellert Grindelwald in the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them series, as well as bringing his future as Captain Jack Sparrow in upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean films into question. When he was canned from Fantastic Beasts, he asked Warner Bros to also fire Amber Heard from her role as Mera in Aquaman 2. The studio didn’t and doesn’t seem all that interested in taking that path, as Heard remains cast in the much-anticipated sequel.
After this request, the online battle heated up. One of the campaigns regarding Amber Heard’s role is a Change.org petition called “Remove Amber Heard from Aquaman 2”. As of this writing, it was coming close to 1.5 million signatures. In this respect, it’s easy to see the side of Heard and the studio. It’s just hard to believe this many real fans out there would be incentivized to get her off the screen, as this is just one of the campaigns being referred to as artificially inflated.
The Amber Heard/ Johnny Depp saga continues to play itself out in the public sphere and doesn’t appear likely to die down anytime soon. Depp has another pending case against The Washington Post and Warner Bros. has even said he could be back in his roles if he were to win a retrial against The Sun. That should give even more time for the troll farms to keep coming after Heard.