Winona Ryder is set to appear at London’s High Court today in support of her ex-fiancé Johnny Depp.
The Edward Scissorhands stars were engaged for three years in the early 1990s, with Depp famously getting a tattoo reading ‘Winona Forever’ (later changed to Wino Forever).
And the Stranger Things actress, 48, will appear via video link from Los Angeles after giving a witness statement saying the 57-year-old actor was ‘never violent’ towards her.
At a preliminary hearing in the case, part of Ms Ryder’s witness statement was revealed in court documents, which read: ‘I cannot wrap my head around (Amber Heard’s) accusations.
‘He was never, never violent towards me. He was never, never abusive at all towards me.’
The star met Depp at the premiere of Great Balls Of Fire! in June 1989 and started dating two months later, eventually splitting in 1993.
Winona has already been mentioned in Depp’s libel case against The Sun’s publishers News Group Newspapers (NGN), after it was claimed that Depp slapped his ex-wife Amber Heard when she mocked his Wino Forever tattoo.
The actress will give her evidence on Wednesday afternoon, after the court hears from Mr Depp’s former and current estate managers, Ben King and Kevin Murphy, in the morning session.
Also on Wednesday, the court is due to hear from actress and advocate for the #MeToo movement Katherine Kendall, who claims she was ‘misquoted’ in The Sun’s article.
In court documents, Mr Depp’s lawyers said Ms Kendall will give evidence to explain how annoyed she was that the article was presented as if she was ‘endorsing’ a comparison between the actor and disgraced film mogul Harvey Weinstein.
In a complaint to the newspaper, Ms Kendall wrote: ‘I never meant to be in an article that called Johnny Depp a ‘wife beater’.
‘I told you that I didn’t know that to be true at all! I have heard SEVERAL times that she was in fact abusive to him. He’s never been a convicted “wife beater”.
‘It seems that the whole article was about defaming him. I said over and over that I didn’t KNOW that he had caused her harm.
‘Even a picture only makes it “seem” so. I’m telling you that you misquoted me and intentionally took things I said out of context in what I now realise was your purpose in defaming Johnny Depp.
‘I told you I have heard Amber Heard hit him, which is why as you know I don’t condone “any” violence. You have improperly tried to use the #MeToo movement for your purposes by using me in this way.’
The court will also hear from Kate James, Ms Heard’s former personal assistant, who is expected to give evidence on Ms Heard’s consumption of red wine and her impression of Mr Depp.
She is also expected to claim that Ms Heard asked her to help draft a letter to US Homeland Security in 2014, which falsely claimed one of Ms Heard’s employees was just a friend, which meant she would not fall foul of regulations.
Trial judge Mr Justice Nicol said in a preliminary ruling that he will determine during the trial whether Ms James’s evidence relating to what has been referred to in court as the ‘Australia dogs episode’ will be allowed to form part of Mr Depp’s case.
In 2014, Ms Heard and Mr Depp recorded a now infamous video apologising for taking their Yorkshire terriers Pistol and Boo into Australia illegally.
The Pirates Of The Caribbean star is suing NGN and Dan Wootton over the publication of an article on 27 April 2018 with the headline: ‘Gone Potty: How can JK Rowling be ‘genuinely happy’ casting wife beater Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts film?’
His lawyers say the article bore the meaning there was ‘overwhelming evidence’ Mr Depp assaulted Ms Heard on a number of occasions and left her ‘in fear for her life’.
NGN’s defence relies on 14 allegations of domestic violence, all of which Mr Depp denies.
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