2:43pm PT by Eriq Gardner
Amber Heard Evading Deposition, Says 'London Fields' Producer
Not much has happened in recent months in the lawsuit that explores what went wrong with London Fields, the still-not-yet-released film based on Martin Amis' celebrated novel. Since the litigation exploded with hijacking and sexploitation claims, the court docket has been fairly inactive, unless one counts how actress Amber Heard quietly replaced her legal team.
Now, London Fields producer Christopher Hanley is getting antsy, with a motion filed Friday that seeks to compel Heard's deposition. Additionally, his production company is demanding $70,000 in monetary sanctions to punish her for supposed evasiveness.
To recap, Heard is being sued for breaching contract and committing tortious interference in her alleged efforts to undermine the troubled film. According to the complaint, Heard failed to render required acting services, refused to attend the Toronto International Film Festival and conspired with director Mathew Cullen, who didn't like the final cut of the film.
Heard responded with a counterclaim that nude scenes with a body double were secretly filmed in alleged violation of her contract. She also alleged Hanley was given photos of her in various states of undress.
If that's not enough, the litigation then treaded upon Heard's relationship with Johnny Depp, suggesting that the actor was jealous and contributed to the film's behind-the-scenes strife by pressuring Heard to pull support of provocative scenes.
That's when Heard apparently fired her attorneys and added Eric George, who coincidentally was featured in our recent story about conservatives suing YouTube.
The plaintiff now says that Heard's deposition was noticed back in March, but that she's been claiming a busy schedule and repeatedly postponing or not agreeing to a date for testimony under oath.
"Thus, it has become clear that Heard will not make herself available unless ordered to do so by this Court," writes plaintiff's attorney Mathew Rosengart.
For extra background, Rosengart recounts "Heard's extreme, frivolous efforts to avoid being deposed" in the divorce with Depp, including how she "postponed her deposition numerous times, offering various excuses in court filings, including that she was attending an engagement party in New Jersey and flying to London for a costume fitting and would not return until June 17, 2016, yet days later signed a declaration under penalty of perjury in Los Angeles on June 13 and was photographed in West Hollywood on June 16, 2016."
Heard's camp responds.
“This is a motion that never should have been brought in a case the plaintiff should not have filed," said a spokesperson for Heard in a statement. "Despite the complete lack of merit to the plaintiff’s claims, however, Ms. Heard has complied and will continue to comply with her obligations in the case.”