Johnny Depp has had a fall from grace quite unlike any other.
For much of his 40-year career, Depp was one of the most sought-after actors in Hollywood, with an appeal so universal and evidently enduring he became a major box office drawcard – to date, his films have grossed US$8.7 billion ($13.3b) at the box office, worldwide.
And, as such, became one of the wealthiest actors in the business and was estimated, at one point, to be worth NZ$1.3b. Until he squandered it all.
The ongoing $76m defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard has brought fresh scrutiny on both parties' lives, their marriage and divorce, past relationships, charitable contributions, and their bank balances. Specifically, what sort of a dent this case may leave in their pockets.
Johnny Depp's net worth
Depp's finances have been a thing of infamy.
He is not only known for being among the most "overpaid" actors in Hollywood – pocketing, on average, $30m per role, plus 20 per cent on the back-end, according to Celebrity Net Worth – but for his reckless and excessive spending habits, which have been laid out in an endless saga of legal battles.
In 2017, Depp launched a $38m lawsuit against his former business managers accusing them of stealing almost $1b from him, leaving him owing $153m in tax, and "on the brink of bankruptcy", he told Rolling Stone magazine.
The Management Group countersued, claiming that Depp blew through around $30m a month to maintain his lavish lifestyle – including $76,000 in rental fees for storage warehouses, $46,000 for wine, and $307,000 for private jets.
The actor also splurged on a private island (which he and Heard exchanged vows on), an $27m yacht (which he later sold to JK Rowling), a failed record label ($6m), $230,000 on security, and $461,000 to maintain 40 staff.
The world should have known the eccentric actor had a penchant for lavish spending in 2005 when Depp forked out $7m for a cannon to blast the ashes of his late friend Hunter S Thompson over Aspen, Colorado. A cannon. For his friend's ashes.
Depp told Rolling Stone magazine that he "had no idea about money or amounts of money"; but most of what was lost was made from the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise alone.
For the five swashbuckling films, Depp earned an eye-watering $461m – $15m for the first, $30m for the sequel (plus a bonus of $61m), and around $76m each for the third and fourth instalments. According to Forbes, the fifth film earned Depp a cool $138m.
The success of the franchise meant the actor commanded a much higher base rate for his talents. His 2005 Willy Wonka earned $27m, The Tourist paid $30m, and in 2020, he was paid $24m to appear as Gellert Grindelwald, and his $84m payday for Alice in Wonderland still stands as one of the 10 largest acting paychecks for a single movie (his Pirates of the Caribbean pay comes in third).
His exorbitant spending, ongoing legal fees, and multi-million divorce settlement has been cushioned by the numerous business ventures and properties in Depp's portfolio.
As of 2022, Celebrity Net Worth estimates Johnny Depp has a net worth of NZ$230m.
That said it may not be enough to soften the blow of Heard's $153m countersuit that is currently being battled out on a very messy, public stage.