Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s trial is set to resume on Monday (April 25) after Depp was questioned by Heard’s lawyers last week.
The pirates of the Caribbean The actor is suing Heard, who divorced Depp in 2016, for libel over a 2018 op-ed in which she suggested he had abused her. Depp is seeking $50m (£39m) in damages for washington post column that, according to him, directly impacted his career in Hollywood.
Heard, in turn, filed a countersuit, accusing Depp of allegedly orchestrating a “smear campaign” against her and describing her own suit as a continuation of “abuse and harassment.” She has asked for $100m (£78m) in damages, as well as immunity from Depp’s claims.
Depp has testified about a traumatic childhood with an abusive mother, stating that his relationship with Heard reflected that and also accusing her of “bullying” him.
The high-profile trial, which is currently broadcast live on Court TV, has attracted significant attention on social media since it began on Tuesday (April 19).
Some people have condemned the sale of “disgusting” merchandise surrounding the trial, including T-shirts, stickers, mugs and even blankets with quotes from Depp’s testimony and statements against Heard written on them.
Melbourne-based online store Redbubble, which stocks designs by independent creatives, currently returns 106 results for “Johnny Depp test” products. These include t-shirts printed with the words “Justice for Johnny” and “Fck Amber” in multiple color and style options.
CoolPopTees is currently selling a “Team Johnny Depp” t-shirt, which fans of the actor have been seen wearing outside the Fairfax County courthouse, where the libel trial is taking place.
Meanwhile, the Urban Dictionary e-commerce platform is selling a $33 (£26) “Amber Heard” mug, printed with one of the actor’s descriptions that calls her “an actress who can’t even act and is better known.” for divorcing Johnny. Depp and then lying about her relationship with him to the media.”
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This mug is available in nine colors and has over 180 reviews online.
Fans on Twitter have criticized the sale of merchandise surrounding the trial as “deaf” and “weird”, with one user calling it “disgusting”.
“Something about people doing literal merch related to Amber Heard vs. Johnny Depp is very, VERY awkward for me,” another person tweeted.
the independent has reached out to Redbubble for comment.
There has been a similar reaction to the “wacky” nature of online discussion surrounding the domestic abuse trial, including Depp’s responses to Heard’s lawyer Ben Rottenborn during cross-examination.
“The memeification of the trial of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard that focuses [around] intimate partner violence is…concerning,” one Twitter user commented.
“I just found a TikTok of someone who makes and SELLS Johnny Depp t-shirts and quotes from the current trial. I can’t BEGIN to describe why this is incredibly inappropriate and disrespectful, not just from anyone’s perspective but BOTH sides,” another fan wrote, calling the social media frenzy surrounding the trial “horrendous.”
With the trial set to enter its third week on Monday (April 25), there is speculation as to who will testify after Depp.
Tesla boss Elon Musk and actor James Franco are listed as possible witnesses for Heard, and both are scheduled to appear via video conference if called to the stand.
Follow live updates from the trial here.