The head of DC Films, which produced “Aquaman,” testified that the creative team had concerns about Amber Heard’s role in the film’s sequel over a lack of chemistry with co-star Jason Momoa.
On Tuesday, a March recorded deposition of Walter Hamada, President of DC Films, which is a division of Warner Bros., was played for the jury in the defamation trial between Heard and her ex-husband, Johnny Depp. Hamada testified that “Aquaman” was the highest-grossing film ever for the company. He said the studio never planned to portray Heard as a co-lead in “Aquaman 2” and that Heard’s role was not reduced in the forthcoming film, titled “Aquaman the Lost Kingdom.”
“The size of the role of the film that she has was determined in the early development of the script, which would have happened in 2018 I would say. The character’s involvement in the story was sort of what it was from the beginning,” Hamada testified in the deposition. “From the early stages of development of the script, the movie was built around the character of Arthur and the character Orm. Arthur being Jason Momoa and Orm being Patrick Wilson. They were always the co-leads of the movie.”
Depp has sued Heard for $50 million over a 2018 Washington Post op-ed she wrote that the actor claims defamed him and has resulted in him allegedly losing work. Heard has countersued Depp for $100 million, claiming statements his attorney made in which he called her allegations of abuse by Depp a “hoax” defamed her and cost her work.
Heard testified she believes her role in “Aquaman 2” was scaled back and that she had to fight to even be in the movie, which is in post-production and scheduled to debut in 2023.
But Hamada testified in his deposition that after filming “Aquaman,” there was discussion about Heard’s role in a sequel.
“I think editorially they were able to make that relationship work in the first movie but there was a concern that it took a lot of effort to get there and would we be better off recasting, finding someone who had better, more natural chemistry with Jason Momoa and move forward in that way,” Hamada testified.
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