Paul Bettany addressed a disturbing text message between himself and Johnny Depp in a new interview with The Times of London.
The 50-year-old WandaVision star called his text conversations with Depp ’embarrassing,’ and described the libel case that the 58-year-old Pirates Of The Caribbean actor launched against his ex-wife Amber Heard, 35, as ‘a very surreal moment.’
Bettany also claimed that his more jovial responses to Depp’s violent messages were due to falling out of touch with his former friend once he got married to Heard.
Looking back: Paul Bettany, 50, has said he is embarrassed about his controversial 2013 text messages with his friend Johnny Depp in a new interview with The Times of London; seen in 2019
The Beautiful Mind actor said he ‘didn’t know Johnny when he was married to’ the Aquaman actress.
‘I knew him before. But we hadn’t spoken for years. During the marriage I didn’t know them. So I wasn’t around for any of that,’ he explained.
Despite his statement, the text messages were sent prior to Depp and Heard’s marriage, though it was years after they had started dating.
‘We live in a world without context,’ he added, referencing reports of his connection to Depp that emerged during the libel suit.
‘I know how this works. Anything that you say is oxygen for a fire,’ he continued. ‘And there’s just no f***ing fire.
Falling apart: The Beautiful Mind actor said he ‘didn’t know Johnny when he was married to’ the Aquaman actress. Depp suggested they ‘burn’ his then girlfriend Heard, before offering to ‘f***’ her corpse to ‘make sure she’s dead’; seen in 2014 in London
‘The only real way to deal with this elegantly is to say: I’m not sure there’s anybody who has [a smartphone] that would feel comfortable having a team of lawyers scour their private text messages.’
Depp reportedly wrote ‘Let’s burn Amber!!!’ in a tweet to Bettany sent in 2013.
‘Having thought it through I don’t think we should burn Amber — she’s delightful company and easy on the eye, plus I’m not sure she’s a witch,’ the English actor reportedly replied. ‘We could of course try the English course of action in these predicaments — we do a drowning test. Thoughts?’
Depp reportedly escalated the messages into more disturbing, graphic territory, replying, ‘Let’s drown her before we burn her!!! I will f*** her burnt corpse afterwards to make sure she’s dead.’
In December, Bettany said anything he had to say about Depp and Heard would ‘just pour fuel on the fire’ in an interview with The Independent
Bettany previously addressed the conversation in an interview with The Independent from December, though he was reticent to discuss it.
‘I think that’s a really difficult subject to talk about and I think that I just pour fuel on the fire,’ he said.
Although a publicist tried to give the actor an out, he continued speaking about having years-old communications with Depp made public in the court case.
‘It was very strange. It was a strange moment… What was strange about it was you suddenly have one of the most scabrous newspapers in London and their lawyers pouring through your texts for the last 10 years,’ he wrote. Can you imagine what it would be like, honestly, to have a bunch of lawyers go through every one of your emails and texts for 10 years? All I can tell you was that it was an unpleasant feeling.’
In his latest interview, The Times noted that Depp claimed in court that he and Bettany had drank alcohol and consumed drugs together.
Losing case: Depp was suing The Sun for libel after it ran a 2018 headline in which it called him a ‘wife beater,’ though an English court later ruled against him; seen in 2011
Depp was suing The Sun for libel after it ran a 2018 headline in which it called him a ‘wife beater.’
Heard said that the Dead Man star had physically abused her during their marriage, though Depp denied her claims and instead said he had been abused by her, which she subsequently denied.
The two actors met during the filming of their 2011 movie The Rum Diary and began dating shortly afterward. They got married in a civil ceremony in February 2015.
But the union was short-lived, and Heard filed for divorce in May of 2016.
In November 2020, the High Court of Justice for England and Wales ruled against Depp, determining that the majority of the violent incidents of abuse that Heard had described were ‘substantially true.’
After the ruling, Depp left the Harry Potter spin-off franchise Fantastic Beasts, where he was replaced by Mads Mikkelsen.
Depp’s appeal was rejected in March 2021.
Never-ending litigation: Depp is also suing Heard for defamation for a Washington Post op-ed she wrote about leaving an abusive relationship. The case is scheduled to go to trial in April; seen in 2016
Depp continued to find legal avenues in the US, as he sued Heard in Virginia in 2019 for writing an op-ed in The Washington Post in 2018 in which she addressed leaving an abusive relationship, though Depp’s name wasn’t used.
The suit is currently set to go to trial in April.
Heard followed up by countersuing her ex-husband in 2020 over claims that he had led a campaign to try to get her fired from the Aquaman franchise and some of her sponsorships.