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Family over everything. No matter what the latest headline may be, Johnny Depp and Lily-Rose Depp’s relationship as father and daughter will always be unshakeable. Yet many have questions about where the Pirates of the Caribbean actor and the Chanel model really stand today—especially following the ups and downs of Johnny’s defamation lawsuit against his ex-wife, Amber Heard.
Johnny welcomed his daughter, Lily-Rose, in 1999 with his then-partner Vanessa Paradis. The Golden Globe-winning actor also shares a son, Jack, with the French model, whom he dated from 1998 to 2012. After his split from Vanessa, Johnny quickly moved on with Aquaman actress Amber Heard. The pair first met in 2009 when they worked together on the set of The Rum Diary. Years later, Johnny would admit during an April 2022 court hearing that he began developing feelings for Amber while working on the film, despite still being in a relationship with the mother of his children. Amber, for her part, was also in a relationship when she met Johnny. Both stars, however, conveniently split from their respective partners before reconnecting in 2012.
Johnny and Amber went on to marry each other in 2015 after several years of dating. But by 2016, Amber filed for divorce and was granted a restraining order against the Edward Scissorhands actor. Their divorce was finalized in 2017 after they reached an out-of-court settlement, from which Amber received $7 million and reportedly donated to charity. Their tame divorce suddenly got messy the following year, however, when the Zombieland actress published an op-ed in The Washington Post, where she opened up about her experience as a victim of domestic abuse. The article did not mention Johnny by name, yet the timeline included in the piece made it all but obvious that the Fantastic Beasts actor was its subject.
Following Amber’s story, Johnny filed a $50 million defamation lawsuit against his ex-wife in the United States, claiming that her allegations were completely false. The actor also sued the publishers of British newspaper The Sun in a related libel suit, after the paper published an article calling him a “wife-beater.” In 2020, British courts ultimately ruled against Johnny. Meanwhile, his trial in the U.S. kicked off in April 2022.
Ever since, those following Amber’s allegations and the ensuing case in the U.S. have wondered what Johnny Depp’s daughter, Lily-Rose Depp, makes of the accusations against her father. For everything we know about where their relationship stands now—including whether she sides with him or his ex-wife Amber—just keep on reading ahead.
What was Lily-Rose Depp’s reaction to Amber Heard’s allegations?
As the daughter of a famous star, Lily-Rose has always been relatively tight-lipped when it comes to speaking about her father—and the same could be said of her response to his ex-wife Amber Heard’s allegations. But while Lily-Rose has never issued a direct statement about her former stepmother’s claims, she has made it clear that she’s on her dad’s side. In a since-deleted Instagram post from 2016, Lily-Rose defended her father’s character after news broke of Amber’s initial allegations.
“My dad is the sweetest, most loving person I know, he’s been nothing but a wonderful father to my little brother and I, and everyone who knows him would say the same,” she wrote alongside a photo of herself and her father, which was taken years earlier. At the time, Lily-Rose’s mom Vanessa also supported the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory star. “In all the years I have known Johnny, he has never been physically abusive with me and this looks nothing like the man that I lived with for 14 wonderful years,” she wrote in a court letter defending Johnny’s character.
Years later, in her first interview after her dad’s failed defamation trial in the U.K., Lily-Rose offered a more cryptic perspective about nobody being perfect. “You can’t be perfect all the time. Nobody’s perfect. Period. I think that’s just the fact of life,” Lily-Rose told Entertainment Tonight at the time. “But I think a big part of keeping a good head on your shoulders is just having a lot of self-awareness and never feeling like you take yourself too seriously to put your actions back into question.”
She continued, “I think it’s always good to have a good self-reflection about the things you’ve done and always thinking about how you could be better.”
What was Lily-Rose Depp’s relationship with Amber Heard?
Considering that Johnny and Amber were together for a number of years, it’s only natural that Johnny’s kids formed a relationship with his then-wife. But what was the nature of Amber’s relationship with his daughter, Lily-Rose? According to Johnny, things between Lily-Rose and Amber were tense for a number of reasons.
“My daughter Lily-Rose did not come to the wedding,” the Pirates of the Caribbean actor said during an April 2022 court testimony, according to Us Weekly. “She and Ms. Heard were not on particularly great terms, for several reasons.” While the actor did not divulge what those reasons were, Lily-Rose’s absence from his nuptials paints a pretty clear picture of where she stood with the actress.
Amber, on the other hand, has insisted that she and Lily-Rose had a tight bond. In an interview with Marie Claire in 2015, Amber gushed about being a stepmother to Lily-Rose and her brother Jack, calling the experience “an honor and the greatest, most surprising gift I have ever received in my life.” She added at the time, “I feel new flavors that I didn’t know existed. New colors that I didn’t know existed have been added to my life. I’m so happy.”
Years later, during her own court testimony, Amber expressed feeling “protective” of Lily-Rose after only knowing her for a short time. “I felt protective over Lily-Rose and concerned and naturally they were not my children, it’s not my place and I understand that, I know it’s a sensitive subject, so I understand why Johnny got so upset with me,” she said on the stand, before accusing Johnny of encouraging his daughter to use drugs.
“But that and the introduction of the weed with his daughter, she was so young, I felt protective,” Amber claimed, per People. “It’s not my place and I made him really angry by weighing in on that.” Johnny, for his part, denied these claims during his 2020 libel suit against The Sun, noting he “never encouraged my daughter to use marijuana.”
What is Johnny Depp and Lily-Rose Depp’s relationship like today?
So, where do Johnny Depp and Lily-Rose stand now? For Johnny, it appears his children continue to remain a top priority. At the start of his defamation trial in April 2022, the actor expressed that he felt the need to “clear the record” for the sake of his daughter, Lily-Rose, and son, Jack. “Since I knew there was no truth to it whatsoever, I felt it my responsibility to stand up not only for myself in that instance but stand up for my children, who at the time were 14 and 16,” Johnny said of Amber’s abuse allegations.
While Lily-Rose has not issued a response to her father’s 2022 trial, she has expressed that she’s open to working closely with her father in the future. Like Johnny, the young star has pursued an acting career and has appeared in films alongside her dad in the past. “Never say never,” Lily-Rose said when asked if she would ever collaborate with her dad again in an Entertainment Tonight interview. “That’s really not something that I consider first and foremost. What’s interesting to me is the particular character that I may or may not be playing and then the story that it’s telling. But yeah, I mean, I love to work with great actors,” she added, subtly complimenting her dad’s acting chops.
Johnny, meanwhile, has always had a special place in his heart for his daughter. “Lily’s really together, she’s a sharp kid and one of the smartest human beings I have ever met,” he told the Daily Mail in 2015. “Whatever she is doing, if she needs any advice, I’m there for her. Kids are going to make their own decisions, but I guess that the only thing you can do as a parent is to offer support. And I do.”
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, help is available. Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-SAFE (7233) for confidential support.