Footage shows Johnny Depp holding his hands over his face after a doctor asked if Marlon Brando was dead while being questioned by Depp’s attorney during court today (Monday 23 May). Watch the bizarre exchange here:
Dr David Spiegel, a psychiatrist and physician, was called to the stand today as an expert witness, as Depp’s defamation case against ex-wife Amber Heard continues.
The doctor testified that Depp’s alleged use of an earpiece while filming may be a sign of decline or impairment from drug and alcohol use, comparing it to an instance in his own field.
"If I was giving a lecture and I was fed my lines, I would think there's a cognitive deficit," Spiegel said.
He said he felt the set-up sounded ‘unusual’, but admitted: “I don’t know what the standard for Hollywood is.”
When Depp’s lawyer Wayne Dennison asked if Spiegel may have made a ‘mistake’, he hit back: “I don’t believe that actors are routinely given their entire script through earpieces. I find that hard to believe.”
Dennison argued there was no evidence to prove this, asking: “Do you know whether Marlon Brando used an earpiece?"
Spiegel then replied: “Whether... Isn’t he dead?”
As sniggers could be heard from the courtroom, Depp buried his face in his hand as Spiegel added: “So the answer’s no, he does not use one now.”
Depp’s lawyer clarified: “No... I used the past tense.”
Apologising, Spiegel continued: “Again, I know nothing – I will concede to you I know nothing about acting. I will concede to you 100 percent.
“If that is the standard, and people have done that thing, then I apologise and that was wrong on my part.”
Earlier in the session, Spiegel was also questioned by Heard’s attorney Elaine Bredehoft, who asked him to comment on the psychologist profile of those who suffered and perpetrated 'intimate partner violence' (IPV) and whether or not they were consistent with Depp's behaviour.
Spiegel explained he has treated thousands of patients – 75 percent of whom have experienced substance abuse problems.
He said he has also studied the effects of drugs and alcohol on the brain, and the causes and effects behind IPV, saying it is a repetitive behaviour over a period of time, which includes physical, emotional, psychological and sexual abuse.
Spiegel told Bredehoft: “In my opinion – based on my review of the evidence, based on my clinical experience, based on my publishing experience, based on my teaching experience – that Mr. Depp has behaviours that are consistent with both someone who has a substance use disorder as well as behaviours of someone who is a perpetrator of intimate partner violence."
Spiegel later also explained in his testimony: "We all get angry as people, we all think things about people. The difference is when our brains are intact and acting well, most of us do not act them out."
Featured Image Credit: Law and Crime Network
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