High Court hears details of messages between Depp and actor Paul Bettany

PA Reporters
·4-min read

Johnny Depp sent a text to his friend actor Paul Bettany saying he was going to “stop the booze thing” after drinking “all night” before a flight to Los Angeles, the High Court has heard.

In the message, the actor described consuming a mix of alcohol as well as “powders” and having had “no food for days”.

The text, sent to Mr Bettany on May 30 2014, was read out by Sasha Wass QC, barrister for News Group Newspapers (NGN) as Mr Depp, 57, gave evidence in his libel trial against the publisher.

It read: “I’m going to properly stop the booze thing, darling.

“Drank all night before I picked Amber (Heard) up to fly to LA this past Sunday. Ugly mate. No food for days. Powders. Half a bottle of whisky.

“A thousand red bull and vodkas, pills, 2 bottles of champers on plane and what do you get?

“An angry aggro injun in a f****** blackout, screaming obscenities and insulting any f*** who got near.

“I’m done. I am admittedly too f***** in the head to spray my rage at the one I love. For a little reason as well … I’m too old to be that guy … But pills are fine.”

When asked by Ms Wass what he had to say about the text, Mr Depp said: “I can see it says I drank all night before I picked Ms Heard up to fly to LA.”

Johnny Depp court case
Court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook of actor Johnny Depp (right) being cross-examined by Sasha Wass QC (left) (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

He explained that “powders” referred to cocaine.

Ms Wass said the text showed Mr Depp “did consume more than you previously have admitted”, which the actor said was correct.

Mr Depp was asked about the reference to “two bottles of champers”, meaning champagne.

He said: “I’m going to say that I made a mistake about the full intake on the plane.”

Ms Wass QC said: “It sounds like you overdid it.”

Mr Depp replied: “It sounds like a very self-destructive moment and it was incorrect in my statement that I had not taken cocaine and things of that nature.

“I can only say my apologies to the court.”

Ms Wass asked about the reference to “angry aggro injun”.

Paul Bettany (Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA)
Paul Bettany (Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA)

Mr Depp explained that it was “a reference to a Native American” and said he had “part Native American blood”.

Ms Wass QC also read out a text sent by Mr Depp to singer Patti Smith shortly after telling Paul Bettany that he was “going to properly stop the booze thing”, which said: “I f***** up and drank and got s***ty.

“I was so disappointed in myself.”

On May 24 2014, Mr Depp and Ms Heard, 34, took a private plane from Boston to LA.

The couple have differing accounts of the flight, with Ms Heard claiming that Mr Depp had been drinking heavily and threw objects at her, pushed a chair at her, slapped her and kicked her in the back before passing out in the toilet.

Mr Depp says Ms Heard “began to harangue him” as he was sketching in a notebook, he then tried to “playfully tap her on the bottom with his foot”, at which Ms Heard took “great offence” and “continued to verbally berate” him.

The flight is one of 14 alleged incidents of domestic violence, all denied by Mr Depp, relied on by NGN in their defence against the actor’s libel claim.

Earlier on Wednesday, Ms Wass read the court a message from Mr Bettany to Mr Depp, sent in June 2013, about Ms Heard.

The message said: “I just thought of a way for us to make a lot of money!

“I know you already have a lot of money but I mean a lot of money and with very little effort.

“First of, all we buy Amber a pet beaver and then we take pictures of you shaving said beaver.

“All that’s left is to do is to create a website with the domain name ‘Johnny Depp shaves Amber Heard’s beaver’ and then we sell advertising space like f***** crazy!!!

“Clearly there are many spin offs, you could poke, stroke, punch, etc.”

Ms Wass asked if that was “a respectful way” of talking about Ms Heard.

Mr Depp said: “It’s not the most respectful way of speaking about Ms Heard.

“They had their difference and didn’t like each other very much.”