On Monday, actor Johnny Depp is set to take the stand in the defamation trial in Fairfax County, Virginia, between him and his former wife, Amber Heard. Depp sued Heard in 2018 for an op-ed she penned in The Washington Post about being a domestic violence survivor. Although Heard did not mention Depp in his Post column, Depp claims his professional reputation was harmed. The case’s closing arguments are set to begin this Friday. Nicole Bedera, a sociologist who specializes in sexual violence, spoke to NPR on Weekend Edition Sunday about the trial and its implications for discussions about intimate partner violence.
When asked Bendra, if it could be possible that the public might be more sympathetic toward Depp because he is such a big movie star and so well-liked on screen for decades? She replied, “Yes, This is something I say a lot,” she continued. “We all think that sexual violence is wrong and say that we will believe and support survivors, up until the perpetrator is someone we know and like. You don’t want to feel like you’re a bad person if you continue to like Pirates Of The Caribbean.”
Bendra also talked about why studios were less willing to work with Jonny. She said, “Johnny Depp is facing a lot of consequences for committing acts of violence, not just to Amber Heard but also for volatile behavior on set. And people who work alongside him have a bit clearer of a picture than somebody who’s watching it on TikTok and doesn’t know any of the people involved in this case. Both Johnny Depp and Amber Heard admit that there was violence in this relationship. The question is whether or not there should be consequences for that violence. And that’s the fight we’re having in public right now.”