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Jury awards Depp $15 million in libel case, $2 million to Heard in countersuit

Publish: 10:01 AM, 02 Jun, 2022


A US jury awarded Johnny Depp $15 million in a libel lawsuit he brought against ex-wife Amber Heard for claiming she was abused in a Washington Post op-ed. But the same jury also awarded Heard $2 million in her countersuit, finding that she was defamed when Depp's lawyer claimed her allegations of abuse were a hoax. 

 A jury on Wednesday ruled in favor of Johnny Depp in his libel lawsuit against ex-wife Amber Heard, vindicating his stance that Heard fabricated claims that she was abused by Depp before and during their brief marriage.

The jury also found in favor of Heard, who said she was defamed by Depp’s lawyer when he called her abuse allegations a hoax. 

Jury members found Depp should be awarded $10.35 million in damages, while Heard should receive $2 million.

The verdicts bring an end to a televised trial that Depp had hoped would help restore his reputation, though it turned into a spectacle of a vicious marriage. Fans - overwhelmingly on Depp’s side - lined up overnight to grab a seat in the courtroom. Spectators who couldn’t get in lined up on the street to cheer Depp and jeer Heard whenever either appeared outside.

Depp sued Heard for libel in Fairfax County Circuit Court over a December 2018 op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post describing herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse.” His lawyers said he was defamed by the article even though it never mentioned his name.

While the case was ostensibly about libel, most of the testimony focused on whether Heard had been physically and sexually abused, as she claimed. Heard enumerated more than a dozen alleged assaults, including a fight in Australia - where Depp was shooting a “Pirates of the Caribbean” sequel - in which Depp lost the tip of his middle finger and Heard said she was sexually assaulted with a liquor bottle.

Depp said he never hit Heard and was never out of control when drinking, though Heard’s attorneys highlighted text messages Depp sent to friends recounting the copious amount of alcohol and drugs he had taken at that time. Her attorneys also showed that Depp sent texts apologizing to Heard for his behavior and wrote profane messages to a friend in which Depp said he wanted to kill Heard and defile her dead body.

In some ways, the trial was a replay of a lawsuit Depp filed in the United Kingdom against a British tabloid after he was described as a “wife beater.” The judge in that case ruled in the newspaper’s favor after finding that Heard was telling the truth in her descriptions of abuse.

In the Virginia case, Depp had to prove not only that he never assaulted Heard, but that Heard’s article - which focused primarily on public policy related to domestic violence - defamed him. He also had to prove that Heard wrote the article with actual malice. And to claim damages he had to prove that her article caused the damage to his reputation as opposed to any number of articles before and after Heard’s piece that detailed the allegations against him.

Depp, in his final testimony to the jury, said the trial gave him a chance to clear his name in a way that he the U.K trial never allowed.

“No matter what happens, I did get here and I did tell the truth and I have spoken up for what I’ve been carrying on my back, reluctantly, for six years.” Depp said.

Heard, on the other hand, said the trial has been an ordeal inflicted by an orchestrated smear campaign led by Depp.

“Johnny promised me - promised me - that he’d ruin my life, that he’d ruin my career. He’d take my life from me,” Heard said in her final testimony.

The case captivated millions through its gavel-to-gave television coverage and impassioned followers on social media who dissected everything from the actors’ mannerisms to the possible symbolism of what they were wearing. Both performers emerge from the trial with reputations in tatters with unclear prospects for their careers.

Eric Rose, a crisis management and communications expert in Los Angeles, called the trial a “classic murder-suicide.”

“From a reputation management perspective, there can be no winners,” he said. “They’ve bloodied each other up. It becomes more difficult now for studios to hire either actor because you’re potentially alienating a large segment of your audience who may not like the fact that you have retained either Johnny or Amber for a specific project because feelings are so strong now.”

Depp, a three-time best actor Oscar nominee, had until recent years been a bankable star. His turn as Capt. Jack Sparrow in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” film helped turn it into a global franchise, but he’s lost that role. (Heard and Depp’s teams each blame the other.) He was also replaced as the title character in the third “Fantastic Beasts” spin-off film, “The Crimes of Grindelwald.”

Despite testimony at the trial that he could be violent, abusive and out of control, Depp received a standing ovation Tuesday night in London after performing for about 40 minutes with Jeff Beck at the Royal Albert Hall. He has previously toured with Joe Perry and Alice Cooper as the group Hollywood Vampires.

Heard’s acting career has been more modest, and her only two upcoming roles are in a small film and the upcoming “Aquaman” sequel due out next year.

Depp’s lawyers fought to keep the case in Virginia, in part because state law provided some legal advantages compared with California, where the two reside. A judge ruled that Virginia was an acceptable forum for the case because The Washington Post’s printing presses and online servers are in the county.

- AP

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard   Jury   Verdict  


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‘Hawa’ nominated for Oscars

Publish: 03:23 PM, 25 Sep, 2022


The Bangladeshi movie ‘Hawa’ has received a nomination for the ‘Best International Feature Film’ category at the 95th Oscars. 

Oscar Bangladesh Committee Coordinator Abdullah Al Maruf confirmed this information.

He said there were two films submitted to the jury for nominations for Oscars. but “Hawa” was selected.

He mentioned that the members of the jury board were impressed with the movie’s technical aspects.

The story of the movie ‘Hawa’ directed by Mejbaur Rahman Sumon revolves around eight sailors and a mysterious Bedeni stranded on a fishing trawler without a destination in the middle of the sea. In the mystery drama genre, the film ‘Hawa’ is basically a fairy tale of this period. 

Mejbaur Rahman Sumon, Mezbaur Rahman Sumon, Sukarna Saheed Dhiman and Jahin Farooq Amin wrote the film’s screenplay with the story and dialogues of Mejbaur Rahman Sumon.

Chanchal Chowdhury, Nazifa Tushi, Sariful Razz, Sumon Anowar, Nasir Uddin Khan, Shohel Mondol, Rizvi Rizu, Mahmud Alam and Bablu Bose acted in this star-studded movie. Cinematography done by Kamrul Hasan Khosru, editing by Sajal Alok, background music by Rasheed Sharif Shoaib and music composed by Emon Chowdhury.

The 95th Academy Awards will be held on March 12, 2023, organized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The award will be given to 24 categories at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles, California. Best International Feature Film is one of them.

Hawa   Oscars  


Color Inside

Famous comedian Raju Srivastav Passes Away

Publish: 01:34 PM, 21 Sep, 2022


In a shocking news, Comedian Raju Srivastav breathed his last on Wednesday (21 September). Srivastav was admitted to AIIMS Delhi on August 10 after experiencing chest pain. He reportedly collapsed while working out at the gym.

Raju Srivastav, who has died aged 58, was an ace comedian and actor best known for Hindi films such as Maine Pyar Kiya, Baazigar, the remake of Bombay to Goa, and Aamdani Atthani Kharcha Rupaiya. A familiar face in the entertainment industry since the 1980s, Raju Srivastav catapulted to fame after participating in the first season of the reality stand-up comedy show The Great Indian Laughter Challenge in 2005.

The comedian was admitted to Delhi’s AIIMS hospital on August 10 after suffering a cardiac arrest. He had collapsed while running on the treadmill in a gym in South Delhi. He was rushed to the hospital by his trainer and was given CPR followed by angioplasty.

Raju Srivastav, often credited as Gajodhar, was born on December 25, 1963, in Uttar Pradesh’s Kanpur in a middle-class family. His father, Ramesh Chandra Srivastava, was a poet and he was popularly known as Balai Kaka. Raju Srivastav was a good mimic since childhood and he always knew that he would become a comedian.

Raju Srivastav began his career by doing small roles in Hindi films. He also participated in Bigg Boss (Hindi season 3) where he stayed in the house for more than two months. He later participated in the comedy show Comedy Ka Maha Muqabala. In 2013, the comedian along with his wife participated in Nach Baliye season 6. He has also appeared on Comedy Nights with Kapil.

Raju Srivastav   Passes Away  


Color Inside

Tamil actress Deepa committed suicide, leaves ‘suspicious’ note

Publish: 03:45 PM, 19 Sep, 2022


Actress Pauline Jessica, who goes by her stage name Deepa died by suicide. She was 29.

The Andhra-based Tamil actress best known for her roles in 'Thupparivalan', and 'Vaaitha', was found hanging at her apartment in Chennai on Sunday (Sep 18) morning. She also left a suspicious message in her diary.

As per the reports, Deepa's friend Prabhakaran rushed to the place and informed her brother in Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh, and also the Koyambedu police. The police officials rushed to the spot, and send the mortal remains for post-mortem.

The police also seized a diary written by Deepa. In the diary, it was reportedly written, that she does not like life, as there is no one to support her. The note also reads that she fell in love with someone, who didn't accept her love, and hence she is going to end her life. With this message in the diary, police officials are enquiring about Deepa's boyfriend to find more reasons for the actress' demise.

The untimely demise of 29-year-old actress Deepa has left Kollywood shocked, while the friends of the actress took to their respective social media handles to express grief.

In the wake of the surging number of suicide cases, many movie stars have spoken about the need for asking for help. They have shared the contact the State Health Department helpline number:104 so that if anyone is facing mental health issues or comes to know about suicidal thoughts will have a support system.

Tamil actress   Deepa   Suicide  


Color Inside

Gazi Mazharul Anwar passed away

Publish: 12:23 PM, 04 Sep, 2022


Gazi Mazharul Anwar a renowned Bangladeshi musician, film director, producer and lyricist have passed away Sunday (3rd September) morning. He was 79.

Doctors at the United Hospital pronounced him dead when he was taken to United Hospital on Sunday, said his nephew Shahriar Nazim Joy.

Shahana Mirza, daughter-in-law of Gazi Mazharul Anwar, said that his father-in-law was suffering from acidity problem for the past few days. He was taken to a doctor yesterday for blood test and was scheduled to undergo more tests today.

Details regarding his namaz-e-janaza are yet to be announced and his burial will take place after the return of his daughter, singer Dithi Anwar who is currently staying abroad. 

Born on February 22, 1943, at Daudkandi in Cumilla, Gazi Mazharul Anwar contributed greatly to the cultural and entertainment industry in Bangladesh with a glorious career spanning more than 60 years. 

In his legendary career as a lyricist, he wrote over 20,000 songs including the coveted patriotic song "Joy Bangla, Banglar Joy." He was one of the eminent lyricists of the Shwadhin Bangla Betar Kendra and three of his songs are included in BBC Bangla's list of the "20 greatest Bangla songs."

“Sagorer Teer Theke,” “Monero Ronge Rangabo,” “Akasher Haatey Achhe Ek Rash Neel,” “Ganeri Khatay Swarolipi Likhe,” “Ei Prithir Pore,” “Osru Diye Lekha,” “O Amar Rosiya Bondhure,” “Eki Sonar Aloy,” “Ami Rajanigandha Phuler Moto,” are some of his most popular songs in Dhallwood.

As a film director, he has directed 19 films including “Shasti,” Bichar Poti,” “Artonad,” “Jiboner Golpo” and more. 

He received the Bangladesh National Film Award as a lyricist for ‘Tit for Tat’ (1992), ‘Ajante’ (1996), ‘Churiwala’ (2001), ‘Lal Dariya’ (2002), ‘Kokhono Megh Kokhono Brishti’ (2003) and ‘Meyeti Ekhon Kothay Jabe’ (2016).

Gazi Mazharul Anwar was honoured with the Ekushey Padak in 2002 and received the Independence Award in 2021. 

Gazi Mazharul Anwar  


Color Inside

Legal notice seeks complete ban on screening Hawa

Publish: 10:25 AM, 23 Aug, 2022


A legal notice has been served to ban screenings of the film Hawa, for violating the Wildlife Conservation and Safety Act, reports UNB

Supreme court lawyer Khandaker Hasan Shahriar sent the notice to the chairman and vice chairman of Bangladesh Film Censor Board and information secretary Mokbul Hossain.

According to the notice, legal action will be taken if a satisfactory response isn't forthcoming within seven days of receiving the notice.

The notice demanded the license of the film be revoked, and to ban its screening worldwide, not just locally.

Besides, it said the Censor Board should be reconstituted to include members of the Wildlife Crime Prevention Unit, lawyers and environmentalists.

In addition, before giving the Censor Board's clearance to any movie in the future, it must be ensured that a film does not violate any section of the Wildlife Conservation and Safety Act-2012.

According to the notice, in the movie which was released on 29 July, a bird named Shalik is seen kept captive inside a cage on a trawler. At one point the bird is killed and eaten.

Besides, there are several scenes in the movie which are clear violations of the Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act, 2012. This might encourage people to hunt, cage and kill birds.

No permission was taken from the Forest Department to promote this scene, added the notice.

Earlier on 17 August, four officers of the Wildlife Crime Prevention Unit filed a case after seeing the movie.