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The Celebs Are Covertly Unliking Johnny Depp’s Post-Trial Instagram Post

In the immediate wake of the jury decision in Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s trial, Depp looked like a big winner, with Heard being found guilty on all counts of defamation. Depp’s Instagram post celebrating his win is one of the platform’s most popular pictures of all time, with 19.4 million likes. But a few of those likes are starting to vanish, and they are coming from some pretty high profile accounts.

That might have something to do with newly unsealed court documents, which Depp supporters fundraised to secure the release of. The belief among Depp’s fans was that these documents would vindicate Depp in the eyes of even Heard’s supporters in addition to his resounding legal victory. However, the information in the document appears to be backfiring, painting a far less friendly picture of Depp’s legal team than many of his supporters had believed.

Among other the things, the documents show that Depp’s legal team considered using nude photos of Heard against her and knowingly manipulated materials submitted by Depp’s team. The documents also contained notes from Depp and Heard’s therapist, who confirmed that Heard was a “intimate partner violence” victim; as well as texts that would seem to confirm Heard’s allegations that Depp had kicked and punched her on a private plane. Anyone wanting to believe that the Pirates of the Caribbean star was an innocent victim of a lying, conniving woman is hard pressed to maintain that narrative following the release of these documents.

Of course, combing through legal documents isn’t exactly the American public’s favorite pastime, so the question of how much this will impact the general public is anyone’s guess. But it appears to at least be having an impact on some of Depp’s celebrity supporters.

According to Buzzfeed News, about 105 well-known celebrities “liked” Depp’s post. But since the court documents dropped, around a dozen have retracted that like. Buzzfeed, Jezebel and several social media accounts are keeping track of who’s jumping ship. So far, that list includes Robert Downey, Jr., Amanda Knox, Orlando Bloom, Bella Hadid, Halle Bailey, Maren Morris, Riley Keough, Sophie Turner and Yungblood.

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These people abandoned a longer list of celebrities who initially liked Depp’s post back in May, a group which includes Jason Momoa, Taika Waititi, Jennifer Anniston, Zoe Saldana, Gemma Chan and more.

You can’t draw a ton of conclusions from an Instagram “like.” Lots of us just mindlessly “like” things online all day long without necessarily considering the broader implications. But retroactively removing a “like” does take a little thought. It would suggest that these people weighed the evidence and no longer think lending their public support to Depp is worth it. None of them have commented yet, so we can only guess at the motives here. But it seems that the long, tragic story around Depp and Heard’s split isn’t done yet — and for those of us who’ve made our minds about which “side” we’re on, there’s value to paying attention to new information as it becomes available.

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