KUALA LUMPUR: Actress Amber Heard is in hot soup after a series of leaked audiotapes revealed that she had admitted to hitting former husband Johnny Depp.
According to the Jakarta Post, this revelation had led to an online petition calling for the 33-year-old American actress to be removed from the blockbuster superhero film Aquaman 2.
Over 155,000 people have so far signed it as petition creator, Jeanne Larson, called on outraged fans to take a stand against domestic violence.
Larson wrote on change.org: "As Amber Heard is a known and proven domestic abuser, Warner Brothers and DC Entertainment should and must remove Heard from their Aquaman 2 film project,"
"They must not ignore the suffering of Heard's victims and must not glamourise a domestic abuser. Men are victims of domestic abuse, just like women. This must be recognised, and action must be taken to prevent a known abuser from being celebrated within the entertainment industry."
The petition also gives a rundown of the Aquaman star’s past accounts of domestic violence and her current endeavours to mar Depp's reputation. These details were reported by news.com.au.
Heard and Depp, 56, are currently in a legal battle after her ex-husband took on a USD50 million (about RM206.7 million) defamation case.
This came about after a Washington Post opinion piece published last year featured the starlet implying that the Pirates Of The Caribbean star had abused her during their “toxic” 18-month marriage.
Public opinion started to turn following a series of articles from The Daily Mail that detailed the various audiotapes recorded on Heard's phone in 2015.
The recordings were of the couple attempting to workout their marital troubles.
In these tapes, Heard apparently admitted to hitting Depp in a fight. She had also mocked him by calling him a "baby" and had warmed him that, "I can't promise you I won't get physical like that again".
Depp alleged that his ex-wife had assaulted him on many occasions. In one particular account, he claimed that the top of his finger was severed after she had thrown a bottle of vodka at him.
Apparently, the bottle exploded and tore off his finger resulting in Depp having to undergo multiple surgeries where he almost died after contracting MRSA (a serious bacterial infection) three times.
However, a spokeswoman for the actress had accused Depp of "vindictively" leaking the tape. She apparently told The Daily Mail: "Anyone familiar with the dynamics of domestic abuse would immediately recognise what is really going on here."
It was also reported that Depp had previously attempted to have Heard removed from her role as Mera in the upcoming Aquaman film, as he claimed that her Washington Post article had directly resulted in him being axed from the Pirates Of The Caribbean franchise.
The sequel to the box office-breaking 2018 movie Aquaman is expected to start shooting sometime this year. It’s planned release is in 2022.
So far, there’s no news yet on whether Heard would be reprising her role as Mera in the new film.