Jason Momoa and James Wan reportedly blocked efforts to cut Amber Heard out of Aquaman 2

James Wan, Amber Heard and Jason Momoa
The Johnny Depp/Amber Heard libel trial continues to creep across the seabed of the online subconscious this week, occasionally regurgitating some industry facts or odd moments that inevitably rise to the surface for restless dissection and perusal. Today, that bolus hunt took the form of testimony from "entertainment industry consultant" Kathryn Arnold (whose job apparently consists primarily of testifying about the industry in lawsuits like this one), who spoke on the effects of Heard and Depp's divorce and subsequent, totally non-cult backlash against Heard that ensued impacted her career.
Which was "significant" in Arnold's narrative, especially in relation to Heard's starring role in the Aquaman sub-franchise of Warner Bros. films. Arnold's testimony was interesting in that it appeared to confirm some of the things people had already concluded for the past several years, including the fact that Heard was deliberately banned from promotional materials for the film's sequel and banned from DC's FanDome event was fired almost directly from the film despite being part of a previously billionaire superhero blockbuster.
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Per The Wrap, Arnold — who was called as a witness on Heard's behalf as she tried to ward off Depp's allegations of defamation over a comment she wrote about an abuse survivor a few years ago — noted that "research has shown when." Anytime Heard's name was mentioned, whether in the context of a film, TV show, magazine article, or endorsement deal, there was an immediate backlash from fans on social media." (Readers at home can replicate this research by typing in 2022 approximately spend four seconds on Twitter.) As such, Warner Bros. Heard said it was functionally banned from FanDome, the company's now annual celebration of its brands and various film attributes.
Additionally, the studio reportedly pushed for her immediate removal from Aquaman And The Lost Kingdom, which was only stopped by a united front from co-star Jason Momoa and director James Wan. According to Arnold's testimony, Wan and Momoa were both "dedicated to her" and "strongly believed she was in the film." Despite this, Heard has testified that her role in the film was officially cut due to an alleged lack of chemistry with Momoa.
Arnold noted that Depp's career was also damaged by the public strife between him and Heard, although she also noted that the comment allegedly at the center of the entire affair was a minor blip on Hollywood's radar — until Depp filed his lawsuit over it and turned it into the crying PR ulcer it is today.
Jason Momoa
American actor and model
James Wan
Malaysian-Australian director, producer, screenwriter and comics writer
belongs to amber
American actress
Johnny Depp
American actor, film producer and musician

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