London (AFP) – Johnny Depp walked into the hallowed halls of London’s High Court three weeks ago seeking to expunge the stain of being branded a “wife beater” by The Sun tabloid.
But the 57-year-old will still have to win in the court of public opinion even if he comes out victorious once the star-studded trial ends Tuesday.
“I think the damage is done,” said London PR agent and crisis consultant Mark Borkowski. “Even if he wins, it’s going to be a Pyrrhic victory.”
Heard has enjoyed a less lucrative career but has potentially even more to lose.
The 34-year-old’s allegations emerged just as the #MeToo movement began exposing a history of sex abuse in film and media industry as a whole.
“She becomes a totem, an icon,” said Borkowski. “She becomes a significant figure in the ongoing culture wars.”
The judge must read through a dozen volumes of evidence and is expected to take some days before delivering his verdict.
But Borkowski said he has already drawn his own conclusion from the case.
“To me it says one thing, both for Johnny Depp and Amber Heard and the whole process: Fame is toxic,” said the legal expert. “Fame is a monster.”