Amber Heard has said she and Johnny Depp were “awful to each other” during their “toxic” relationship, admitting she made “a lot of mistakes – but always told the truth”.
The actress said that to her “dying day” she would stand by the testimony she gave in court in Fairfax, Virginia, despite jurors finding in Depp‘s favour – concluding that a column she wrote about domestic abuse was defamatory – after hearing six weeks of evidence.
In her first interview since the verdict on 1 June, Heard sat down with journalist Savannah Guthrie from NBC News to speak about the trial.
Asked about Depp’s claim that he never hit Heard, and if the actress claims this is a lie, she responded: “Yes it is.”
Depp, 59, has denied he abused Heard.
Addressing her own behaviour during their relationship, she said: “I did do and say horrible, regrettable things throughout my relationship. I behaved in horrible, almost unrecognisable to myself ways. So much regret.
“I have freely, openly and voluntarily talked about what I did. I talked about the horrible language, I talked about being pushed to the extent where I didn’t even know the difference between right and wrong.
“I will always continue to feel like I was a part of this, like I was the other half of this relationship – because I was. And it was ugly and could be very beautiful.
“It was very, very toxic. We were awful to each other. I made a lot of mistakes, a lot of mistakes. I have always told the truth.”
When it was put to her that some of public have been “frankly disgusted” by what played out in court, Heard replied: “Absolutely, I would not blame the average person for looking at this and how this has been covered and not thinking that this is Hollywood brats at their worst.
“But what people don’t understand is that it is actually so much bigger than that. This is not only about our first amendment right to speak.”
However, Guthrie interjected to say the first amendment protects free speech – but not “lies that amount to defamation and that was the issue in the case”.
Heard, 36, also addressed evidence claiming she was also violent during her relationship with Depp.
“I never had to instigate it,” she said. “I responded to it. When you are living in violence it becomes normal. As I testified to, you have to adapt.”
The first half of the interview aired on Tuesday following a preview the previous day, in which Heard said she understood why jurors had believed Depp over her, describing him as “a beloved character and people feel they know him”. She also said she was portrayed as a “non-credible person” during the trial.
After six weeks of testimony, the court case came to an end on 1 June, with the jury finding that a 2018 article Heard wrote for the Washington Post, about her alleged experiences as a survivor of domestic abuse, was defamatory towards Depp.
The actor was awarded $10.35m (£8.2m) in damages.
Heard did win on one count of her counter-suit, successfully arguing that one of Depp’s attorneys defamed her by claiming her allegations were “an abuse hoax” aimed at capitalising on the #MeToo movement.
The jury awarded her $2m (£1.5m) in damages.
During his time on the stand in court, Depp denied abusing Heard and told jurors that his ex-wife’s allegations of domestic violence were “heinous and disturbing”.
He said he was “obsessed” with getting to the truth of what really happened during their relationship.
“I felt it was my responsibility to clear my name and my children of this horrid thing that they were having to read about their father,” he said. “My goal is the truth, because it killed me that people I’d met over the years… would think that I was a fraud and had lied to them”.
Later on in the trial, when asked what it had been like listening to Heard’s testimony, Depp said: “It’s insane to hear heinous accusations of violence, sexual violence, that she’s attributed to me, that she’s accused me of.
“I don’t think anyone enjoys having to split themselves open and tell the truth, but there are times when one just simply has to because it’s gotten out of control.”
He then paused before saying: “Horrible. Ridiculous. Humiliating. Ludicrous. Painful. Savage. Unimaginably brutal, cruel, and all… false. All false.”
After appearing in court for all the evidence, Depp was not there for the verdict, instead touring the UK with musician Jeff Beck.
His lawyers also appeared on the Today show and Good Morning America in the US following the verdict.
Elaine Bredehoft, one of Heard’s lawyers, has said she plans to appeal.
The second half of the actress’s interview is due to air on Wednesday.
Sky News has approached Depp’s representatives for a comment.