Exclusive: More Amber Heard in 'Aquaman 2'?
Written By Mikey Sutton • Editor-in-Chief • Owner
Since Johnny Depp was fired by Warner Bros. from Fantastic Beasts 3 earlier this month after losing his U.K. libel case, rumors and speculation have exploded online about his ex-wife Amber Heard. The latest gossip is, again, her being fired from Aquaman 2 or her screen time as Mera dramatically reduced. This is apparently due to social-media criticism fueled by Depp's accusations against her for physical and mental abuse during their troubled marriage.
I reached out to my sources, just as I had months ago amidst reports of her being dropped from DC Films before a judge made the decision regarding Depp. The answer is the same now as it was then: there are no plans to have Heard fired. Whether Warner Bros. eventually is scared off from the Twitter attacks on Heard and lets her go is unknown. But what I've been told is quite the opposite.
Depp's case actually backfired on him. He sued The Sun publishers News Group Newspapers for describing him as a "wife beater" in a 2018 article. By losing the case, it provided Warner Bros. an excuse for booting him out of the Fantastic Beasts franchise without having to render judgment themselves. WB didn't want to take sides; however, they were afraid of the bad publicity Depp would generate while promoting the movie. When he lost the case, the dominoes fell in the wrong direction that Depp had wanted.
An insider told me that, since the judge believed that The Sun's allegations of Depp as a wife beater were accurate, Heard is seen as the victim in this scandal by WB. Consequently, firing her would be in poor taste and could cause a backlash.
Apparently, Heard will actually have a larger role in Aquaman 2 for reasons unrelated to this situation. WB would like to see her character more fleshed out. But there's another matter.
As Marvel Studios continues to increase their roster of female superheroes with Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, and Kate Bishop eventually graduating from streaming to the cinema, DC Films only has Wonder Woman and Mera in terms of all-ages IPs for theatrical releases. (The anti-hero Harley Quinn's last movie, Birds of Prey, and her next, The Suicide Squad, are rated R.)
As superhero movies continue to champion diversity, DC Films will be further behind if they remove Mera. Yes, simply recasting the character would solve that issue, but Warner Bros. removing an actress who was the victim of spousal abuse will create even worse PR, executives fear, despite what she is also being accused of.