Following his defamation trial victory against ex-wife Amber Heard, Johnny Depp has begun his return to the Hollywood limelight in a big way, as recent days have seen the actor both sign a major deal with fashion brand Christian Dior and unveiled as Louis XV for his first film in three years, Jeanne Du Barry.
Depp’s return to Dior – for whom he previously served as the face for their 2015 Sauvage cologne ad campaign until his spots were pulled following Heard’s allegations of abuse – was first revealed on August 8th via the brand’s official Instagram.
Sharing a series of photos taken of the actor by photographer Greg Williams during the Paris stop of his and Jeff Beck’s recent string of European concerts, the brand described their new spokesman with the slogan, “Fearless yet human, just like Sauvage.”
According to TMZ, Depp’s new contract will see the actor net seven-figures, though the outlet did not provide details as to the exact amount of money he would earn over the course of the multi-year campaign.
Two days later, French film production released the first image of Depp as King Louis XV in their upcoming historical romance, Jeanne Du Barry.
Directed by French filmmaker Maïwenn, who will also co-star in the film as the eponymous French courtesan, and based on a screenplay penned by herself and Le Prix Du Succès (Eng. The Price of Success) Teddy Lussi-Modeste, Jeanne Du Barry will recount a dramatized version of the life of King Louis XV’s third and final mistress.
Though specific details regarding its plot are being kept mum by the studio, the film will ostensibly touch upon such monumental events in Barry’s life as her birth into poverty, her scandal-inducing presentation to the Court at Versailles, and her eventual exile by Marie Antoinette following the death of the King.
(Whether the film will touch upon the can of worms that is the Diamond Necklace Affair – a seemingly innocuous scandal surrounding payments for a piece of jewelry which would eventually help pave the way for the French Revolution is currently anyone’s guess.)
On the afternoon of June 1st, a Fairfax County, Virginia jury found that Heard both defamed and “acted with malice” in publishing her now infamous Washington Post op-ed.
Specifically, the jury was tasked with determining whether or not specific statements found within the op-ed, despite not naming the actor directly, were intended to defame Depp, and if Heard was responsible for their publication.
Not only did the jury find that Heard did indeed defame Depp with these statements, but they also found that the actress acted “with malice” in publishing them.
The jury also awarded Depp $10 million for Heard’s defamatory statements and $5 million for her responsibility in publishing them, but with the latter capped at $350,000 as per Virginia law.
Conversely, in the case of Heard’s $100 Million counter defamation claim, the same jury found in favor of the actress regarding her accusation that Depp’s former Attorney, Adam Waldman, made certain false statements about her to the press while acting as the actor’s representative.
However, in her claim that these statements were made “with actual malice,” the jury ruled against her, ultimately awarding the actress only $2 Million in damages.
As of writing, Jeanne Du Barry does not have a confirmed premiere date.
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