The oft-discussed Amber Heard vs. Johnny Depp defamation trial has hit a new turning point in recent days as Heard opened up about her status with the DC Extended Universe. With 2023's Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom set to once again feature Heard as the Atlantean royal Mera, the superhero franchise remains in a state of flux due to her very public legal troubles.
Throughout production for Aquaman 2, both Heard and the team at Warner Bros. made it clear that the actress was not going to be removed from the sequel, adamantly refusing to give in to mounting pressure from fans on the matter. Even though she's still set to reprise the role she played in Aquaman and both cuts of Justice League, her future within the franchise is uncertain at best.
About a month ago, President of DC Films Walter Hamada noted how Heard's option for the sequel was initially declined due to chemistry problems with Jason Momoa, even though the studio still brought her back regardless of those issues. Now, looking forward, Heard has opened up about what lies ahead with her time in the expansive Justice League universe.
Heard's Future In Justice League Franchise
Via The Hollywood Reporter, DC actress Amber Heard returned to the stand in her defamation trial against Johnny Depp.
Heard revealed that she "couldn't renegotiate" her contract with Warner Bros. for the DCEU, which ended with Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom after her roles in 2017's Justice League and 2018's Aquaman. She received $2 million for her appearance, which doubled her salary for the first movie, but it seems unlikely that the studio will bring her back for future outings as Mera.
This comes the day after she claimed that Warner Bros. had reduced her role in the upcoming sequel due to the trial itself.
Where Does Amber Heard Go From Here?
On top of an uncomfortable amount of controversy that Warner Bros. is already dealing with, Amber Heard's trial puts both her and the studio in a difficult spot.
The Direct exclusively revealed that Heard's hero will spend most of Aquaman 2 pregnant with her and Arthur Curry's child, opening a path for one of the DCEU's younger heroes to take his own place in the franchise. Aside from that, it's unclear exactly how big her role is, but it is clear that Heard isn't satisfied with how the situation unraveled for her.
A third Aquaman movie being greenlit will likely depend on the box office numbers for the upcoming sequel, although Warner Bros. is keeping its plans close to the chest in that regard. Regardless of what happens there, Heard seems fairly sure that her time with the DCEU may be coming to a close as the entire franchise potentially looks ahead to some major changes in the near future.
Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom will debut in theaters on March 17, 2023.