Barely five months after the highly controversial Depp v Heard defamation trial, Johnny Depp is returning to the public eye in one of the most disappointing places. Depp will reportedly be featured in Rihanna’s upcoming Savage X Fenty Vol. 4 fashion show, according to images leaked to the press.
Johnny Depp in Rihanna’s ‘Savage X Fenty Show Vol. 4.’ https://t.co/0KRhtzyfEx
— Pop Crave (@PopCrave) November 3, 2022
TMZ first broke the news on November 3, writing, “Our sources say Rihanna and her team invited Johnny to be a part of it, and both sides were super excited to make it happen.” According to reports, Depp’s role has already been filmed, and instead of the runway, he will perform in a “star” moment—the first man in the show’s history to do so.
Following initial rumors, Variety has confirmed Depp’s involvement in the show. Rihanna herself has yet to comment on the news, though it is hard to imagine she was ignorant of the controversy. The defamation trial and Depp’s alleged abuse were highly publicized throughout the spring.
The trial was in response to a 2018 op-ed his ex-wife Heard wrote, in which she described her experiences as a survivor of physical and sexual abuse. Although she did not name Depp, he sued her for defamation and was ultimately awarded $10.5 million. The jury sided with Heard in only one of her countersuit claims of defamation.
Although Depp prevailed in this particular case, evidence of his abusive behavior has passed legal merit before. He lost a 2020 libel case against The Sun, specifically because the UK court found the claims of abuse were “substantially true.” “I accept [Heard’s] evidence of the nature of the assaults he committed against her,” said Justice Nicol at the time. “They must have been terrifying.”
Amber Heard is now appealing the latest ruling. In a statement at the time, she wrote, “The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence and sway of my ex-husband.
“I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It is a setback. It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke up could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women should be taken seriously.”