A petition to remove Amber Heard from Aquaman 2 has now reached over two million signatures.
The campaign on Change.org has been building for some time with the film’s producer Peter Safran previously dismissing it, saying that it would never influenced the team’s casting choices.
“I don’t think we’re ever going to react to, honestly, pure fan pressure,” Safran said last summer.
“You gotta do what’s best for the movie. We felt that if it’s James Wan, and Jason Momoa, it should be Amber Heard. That’s really what it was.”
Safran later said: “One is not unaware of what is going on in the Twitter-verse, but that doesn’t mean you have to react to it or take it as gospel or accede to their wishes.
“You have to do what’s right for the film, and that’s really where we landed on it.”
Referencing the petition in November 2020, Heard, whose set to reprise her role as Mera in the forthcoming DC sequel, said in an interview, “Paid rumours and paid campaigns on social media don’t dictate [casting decisions] because they have no basis in reality.
“Only the fans actually made Aquaman and Aquaman 2 happen.”
Now, with renewed interest in the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard trial in the US, the petition has gained further traction.
Depp is currently suing his ex-wife for defamation over a 2018 op-ed in The Washington Post, where she wrote about being a survivor of domestic violence.
Heard didn’t mention Depp by name in the piece, though Depp’s lawyers argue it falsely implies she was sexually and physically abused by him in their marriage. She has also filed a counterclaim against her former husband, arguing he has created a smear campaign against her.
Depp lost a libel lawsuit against The Sun in 2020, focusing on an article in the paper from April 2018 that referred to him as a “wife beater”, with Judge Mr Justice Nicol saying in a ruling that he found the words to be “substantially true”.
Earlier this week, the current trial attracted a long queue around the block of public spectators waiting outside the Fairfax County Courthouse, Virginia, where the trial is taking place.
Meanwhile, Aquaman 2 is set to be released on March 17, 2023.