Months after her divorce settlement with ex-husband Johnny Depp, actress Amber Heard has opened up about domestic violence in a new video for the #GirlGaze Project. An emotional Heard fought back tears as she urged women and victims of such abuse to "speak up" and "raise your voice" against violence in the PSA.
"I guess there was a lot of shame attached to that, the label of victim. It happens to so many women you know, when it happens in your home behind closed doors with someone you love it's not straightforward," the 30-year-old actress said. "If a stranger did this, as it was pointed out to me, if a stranger did this it would be a no-brainer".
The Rum Diary star filed for legal separation from Depp in May after 15 months of marriage citing alleged domestic abuse as the reason in her court filings. The actress even produced photos of bruises from alleged incidents to support her claim that the 53-year-old actor had physically abused Heard during the period of their relationship.
However, reports surfaced later suggesting that the domestic violence action and temporary restraining order against The Pirates Of The Caribbean actor had already been dismissed by court.
Recalling the rough phase in her recent past and the support she got from her close circle, Heard continued in the emotional video, "If I hadn't had a few people that I really trust around me, a few women support, a few friends. If I hadn't had them around me, how different my life would be."
She continued, "Just as a woman having gone through this in the public stage, in the public arena that I did it, I have a unique opportunity to remind other women this doesn't have to be the way it is, you don't have to do it alone, you're not alone. We can change this".
Depp and Heard settled their acrimonious legal proceeding in August as the actor agreed to pay his ex-wife a total of $7m (£5.3m) in alimony. Following their settlement, the Drive Angry actress announced that she would donate her entire settlement to a number of charities with "a particular focus to stop violence against women."
Finally, the actress concluded her powerful video message with an appeal. "Speak up, speak up. Raise your voice, your voice is the most powerful thing and we, together, as women standing shoulder to shoulder cannot and will not any longer accept silence," she concluded.