In a one-two strike Friday, Amber Heard sued comic Doug Stanhope for his “highly defamatory” claim that she was blackmailing Johnny Depp, as she revealed explosive new details of her estranged husband’s alleged abuse.
Heard called Stanhope’s Sunday guest column for The Wrap — in which he accused the actress of “blackmail” and crying wolf on Depp’s alleged domestic violence — “completely false” in the defamation suit obtained by the Daily News.
“Stanhope is a close friend of Johnny Depp and, as part of a coordinated effort, wrote a highly defamatory article about Ms. Heard, filled with completely false, highly defamatory and very hurtful statements,” her attorney, Charles J. Harder, told The News in a statement.
She further accused Depp and 20 of his unnamed associates of mounting a smear campaign while the actor promoted his new film, days after Heard filed for divorce and alleged he had attacked her.
“Depp and his representatives further ‘went on the offensive’ during the publicity tour by repeatedly making false public allegations about Heard to the press, accusing her of being manipulative, a blackmailer, and blaming her for the breakup of the marriage — as if Depp’s alcoholism, drug addiction and campaign of violence against his wife played no part,” the papers said.
Heard, 30, seeking “the maximum possible jury award,” will donate the lawsuit’s proceeds to the Chrysalis battered women’s shelter in Stanhope’s home state of Arizona, Harder said.
The lawsuit, filed in Arizona Superior Court, rehashed the actor’s alleged May 21 phone-chucking — but also delved further into the 52-year-old’s allegedly violent behavior, which would apparently rear its ugly head after he “relapsed into a cycle of substance abuse.”
“Depp has hit and kicked Heard on numerous occasions, has thrown objects at her, at one point suffocated her to the point where she feared for her life,” the actress wrote in the documents. “His drug and alcohol abuse has increased dramatically in recent years, as has his violent behavior.”
Heard “optimistically” returned to Depp after his alleged acts of violence, but fell prey to his repeated “cycle of substance abuse and violence,” she said in the papers.
Reps for Stanhope and Depp have not returned the Daily News’ requests for comment.
Heard’s lawyer Peter Sample had previously called Stanhope’s column “outrageous” and demanded a retraction, according to The Wrap.
“The Danish Girl” actress filed for divorce May 23. Four days later, she appeared in a Los Angeles court bearing a visible bruise on her cheek, and won a temporary restraining order against the actor after alleging he had abused her throughout their 15-month marriage.
As Depp’s former partners, daughter, legal team and pal Stanhope have defended him publicly, the actor has lately been partying his way through Europe on tour with his rock super group, Hollywood Vampires.