5 most shocking moments from the Depp v Heard documentary

Daisy Phillipson
Poster for Depp v Heard documentaryChannel 4

With the Depp v Heard documentary just around the corner, we’ve broken down the five most shocking moments from the Netflix series.

It feels like just yesterday and yet also a lifetime ago that the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard defamation trial took place, causing a media frenzy and taking spectators on a rollercoaster ride reminiscent of the OJ Simpson court case – only this time there was TikTok

The discourse surrounding the trial, which ultimately ended with a victory for the Pirates of the Caribbean actor, led to countless memes being circulated online and sparked a feverish debate about the truth behind the allegations. 

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This is exactly what is explored in Depp v Heard, a three-part documentary series set to drop on Netflix this week which showcases both testimonies side-by-side for the first time. Warning: some may find this content distressing.

The most shocking moments from Depp v Heard documentary

While most will remember the shocking moments from Johnny Depp’s defamation case against his ex-wife Amber Heard – from the defecation in the bed to the Australia incident in which Depp lost the tip of his finger – there are a number of other revelations made that weren’t discussed in great detail at the time. 

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So, here are the five most shocking moments from the Depp v Heard documentary that viewers might not have seen or considered when the case unfolded last year.  

Depp v Heard: Unearthed texts about defecation incident 

Amber Heard giving testimony at Johnny Depp's defamation trialNetflix

As said, arguably one of the most scandalous moments in the testimony was Johnny Depp’s accusation that Amber Heard defecated in his bed as part of a cruel act of abuse. The actor’s housekeeper first discovered the fecal matter on Depp’s side of the bed and sent him a photo, which was widely circulated online amid the trial. 

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While Depp claimed Heard carried out the act before going away to Coachella Music Festival, in Episode 1 of Depp v Heard, a social media presenter highlights a series of unearthed text messages that were presented at Depp’s former UK trial against The Sun newspaper. 

The texts appear to show Heard speaking about her dog Boo’s bowel problems, which supports her claim that her teacup Yorkie was to blame for the stool. One of the messages reads: “Okay, sounds good re Boo, but I’m worried it’s not behavioral. I’m worried she’s got brain damage. 

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“She can’t seem to predict or control where she uses the bathroom. Last night she sh*t on Johnny while he was sleeping, like all over him, not exaggerating and I hate to keep punishing her when she seems not to be able to remember.”

This piece of evidence was not showcased at the Virginia defamation trial, despite the fact that it would have supported Heard’s argument. On the other side of the coin, Depp and many who have seen the photo claim that there’s no way the size of the stool matches that of a teacup Yorkie. 

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Starling Jenkins, one of Depp’s security guards, also shared testimony in which he claimed Heard described the incident as “a horrible practical joke gone wrong.” As is the case with this entire saga, we’re still no clearer to knowing the real truth behind the allegations.

Depp v Heard: The unedited version of the TMZ video

The TMZ video was another major point of contention during the Depp v Heard trial. To refresh your memories, a clip was leaked to the website in 2016, showing Depp “having a bad time” in which he admits to drinking heavily in the morning and is seen slamming cabinets in their kitchen. 

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When he spots Heard is secretly filming him, he throws the phone across the room. It was one of the most damning pieces of evidence in Heard’s 2016 deposition against Depp, and was one of the key clips that left people across the globe initially siding with Heard. 

However, as new information emerged, opinions started to change. As is explored in the documentary series, Heard’s team were accused of purposely setting up and leaking the clip to TMZ. Notably, the ending of the video appears to show Heard chuckling to herself as she walks away. 

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While millions of people tuned into the court case as it unfolded in real time, Depp v Heard reminds us of numerous moments that we might have forgotten in time, including the testimony from former TMZ employee Morgan Tremaine. 

He said the video they received was “much shorter” than the one played in the trial, adding: “There was a bit at the beginning that was played here in which Ms Heard is seemingly sort of sitting with the camera and getting into position. And then there’s a bit at the end where she’s seemingly sniggering and looks at the camera. That part was not present in what we received.”

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Once again, there are two sides to the argument, both of which are presented in the series. While many believe Heard purposely set the stage in an attempt to frame Depp, an expert highlights that destroying objects and acting in a violent manner can be considered abuse.

Depp v Heard: The texts from Johnny’s assistant

Johnny Depp giving testimony at his defamation trial against Amber HeardNetflix

In Heard’s testimony, she alleged that Depp kicked her during a 2014 flight from Boston in front of others as she said he was jealous she had been working with James Franco on a movie. 

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While Depp argued that this never happened, the documentary introduces a number of 2014 messages from his assistant Stephen Deuters in which he appears to discuss how the star did kick Heard onboard the private jet. “If someone was truly honest with him about how bad it really was, he would be appalled,” the text, reportedly from Deuters, says. 

“I’m sad he does not have a better way to really know the severity of his actions yesterday. Unfortunately for me, I remember them in full, in full detail, everything that happened. He was appalled, when I told him he kicked you, he cried.”

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While these unsealed documents would have been important for Heard’s defense, the court ruled that the messages weren’t relevant to the case at hand. Depp v Heard goes on to point out that Deuters himself claims the texts were “heavily doctored” and that he never saw the Hollywood actor abuse Heard. 

Court documents presented in Episode 3 also state: “Despite having previously imaged Mr Deuters’ phone, Mr Depp has been unable to locate a series of text messages between Ms Heard and Mr Deuters following the ‘Boston Plane Incident’ that Ms Heard has produced. Strangely, the texts produced by Ms Heard are in a different format than all of the other texts she produced.”

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Depp v Heard: The open letter to Amber Heard

Open letter to Amber HeardTwitter

Following the outcome of the trial, an open letter was published expressing support for Amber Heard, stating: “As many, including A.O. Scott for The New York Times have noted, the vilification of Ms Heard and ongoing online harassment of her and those who have voiced support for her have been unprecedented in both vitriol and scale.”

There was a counter-letter addressed to Heard titled ‘We Will Not Stand With You’, which was previously reported to be a response to the pro-Heard note. However, as is pointed out in Depp v Heard, “a group of domestic abuse survivors” published the open letter on the “day of the verdict.”

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It reads: “Amber, No victim of domestic violence acts in the manner in which you do. You are the abuser, not the abused. You sold us a role, a character – the survivor, and we bought it eagerly.

“We supported you, we wept for you, we rallied behind you, and you betrayed us all. We trusted in you. You used our pain, as you appropriated our stories, re-victimizing us. Then you weaponized our movement against the person you were abusing. All this for what?

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“Merely another move in your twisted mind game to garner relevance, social currency. adulation and more wealth.” You can read the full statement above. 

Depp v Heard: The overwhelming social media statistics

Still from Depp v Heard documentaryNetflix

In the fallout of the Depp v Heard trial, though a verdict was reached, we’re still no closer to uncovering the true events as they happened in real life. What we do know is the role social media played in the events that followed, with much of the public opinion siding with Depp. 

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To provide some perspective of how far the scale tipped in his favor, the documentary highlights some shocking statistics: at the height of the trial, the hashtag #JusticeForJohnnyDepp had approximately 20 billion views, while #JusticeForAmberHeard had just 77.5 million views. 

Episode 3 goes on to consider both sides of the argument post-trial. Heard’s attorney Elaine Bredehoft argued that there’s no way the jury couldn’t have been swayed by the discourse on social media, while Depp’s lawyers Camille Vasquez and Ben Chew claimed there’s no reason why the jurors would break their oath. 

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Depp v Heard drops on Netflix on Netflix on August 16. You can check out some of our other documentaries coverage below:

True story of The Lucie Blackman Case | Where is Natalia Grace now? | Who are the Duggars? | Victim/Suspect explained | Missing Dead or Alive explained | True story behind The Playing Card Killer | True story behind Take Care of Maya | HBO’s Burden of Proof explained | How to watch David Fuller: Monster in the Morgue | How to watch the Hart family murders documentary | True story of The Deepest Breath | True story of Last Call

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About The Author

Daisy is a Senior TV and Movies Writer at Dexerto. She's a lover of all things macabre, whether that be horror, crime, psychological thrillers or all of the above. After graduating with a Masters in Magazine Journalism, she's gone on to write for Digital Spy, LADbible and Little White Lies. You can contact her on daisy.phillipson@dexerto.com