Johnny Depp’s loss in a libel battle in London may be the final straw in a diminishing career as a major movie star but much of the damage had already been done, Hollywood observers said on Monday.
Depp, 57, best known as the swaggering Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, had sued a British tabloid that labeled him a “wife-beater” during his tempestuous relationship with his ex-wife, actor Amber Heard.
Depp had told the court he was never violent towards his ex-wife and his lawyers described the ruling as “perverse as it is bewildering”, and said it would be ridiculous for him not to appeal.
Matthew Belloni, former editorial director of the Hollywood Reporter, said the sordid details of the short-lived marriage had been aired so often in recent years that the London verdict likely had little impact in the industry.
“There is a