Johnny Depp warns Amber Heard of 'bloodbath' in argument, jurors hear

ITV News US Correspondent Emma Murphy reports on Johnny Depp's fourth day of cross-examination

Jurors sitting in Johnny Depp's libel lawsuit against his ex-wife Amber Heard have heard recordings of him allegedly shouting at her, warning of a "bloodbath" if their arguments escalate.

On Monday, jurors heard the recordings as Depp continued to give evidence in the defamation trial, taking place in Fairfax County, Virginia, which is now in its third week.

“The next move, if I don’t walk away... it’s going to be a bloodbath, like it was on the island,” Depp says on the recording.

In other audio clips, Depp loudly shouts at his wife, yelling, “You stupid, fat a**” at her.

Depp winced on the stand as the clips were played, while Heard appeared to fight back tears.

Heard appeared emotional at points during the hearing. Credit: AP

The actor is suing Heard for libel over a 2018 article she wrote in The Washington Post, which his lawyers say falsely implies he physically and sexually abused her. In the op-ed, she refers to herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse”.

The clips were part of a gruelling cross-examination of Depp that concluded late on Monday morning, as he took the stand for a fourth day of testimony over his allegations that Heard falsely portrayed him as a domestic abuser.

While the libel lawsuit is supposed to centre on whether Depp was defamed in the article, most of the trial has focused on ugly details of the couple’s brief marriage.

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Heard’s lawyers continued to focused on Depp’s drinking, drug use and charged interactions with Heard during their relationship.

Depp has denied all allegations that he has ever assaulted Heard.

Her lawyers argue that Depp physically and sexually abused her and that his denials lack merit because he was often drunk and high to the point of blacking out.

Most of the questioning consisted of Heard’s lawyer playing audio clips or reading text messages sent by Depp.

Depp defended texts he'd sent to actor Paul Bettany about burning and drowning Heard, claiming they were a joke based on a Monty Python sketch.

He said he was “ashamed” of the messages but that they were an attempt at “irreverent and abstract humour”.

The court previously heard that during a 2013 text exchange with Bettany, Depp had written: “Let’s burn Amber.

“Let’s drown her before we burn her. I will f*** her burnt corpse afterwards to make sure she’s dead.”

But Depp said he and Bettany had connected over their “abstract sense of humour” to deal with difficult situations, and the comments were never “intended to be real.”

Depp denies ever abusing his ex-wife. Credit: AP

“As these are private texts there was a lot… in context,” he said.

“It’s important to know none of that was ever intended to be real and the language used which… yes, I am ashamed (of) has to be spread on the world like peanut butter.

“For example, the text that is about burning Ms Heard is directly from Monty Python and the sketch about burning witches and then drowning the witches.

“This is a film we’d all watch when we were 10 – it’s just irreverent and abstract humour.”

Depp added that the relationship between Bettany and Heard was “abominable” as she viewed him as a “threat”.

“Ms Heard despised Mr Bettany mainly because we had become such close friends and for her he was a threat and would take me away from her,” he said.

Depp has said the accusations and the article written by Heard contributed to an unfairly ruined reputation that made him a Hollywood outcast and cost him his role in the lucrative “Pirates of the Caribbean” movie franchise.

He told the court that after reading the Washington Post article for the first time he felt like he had been “hit over the head with a two-by-four (piece of wood)”.

Depp has been on the stand in Fairfax County Circuit Court since Tuesday afternoon. The actor testified that Heard abused drugs and that she was the one who physically attacked him.

He called the drug addiction accusations against him “grossly embellished,” though he acknowledged taking many drugs.