Their claims were made as part of witness statements submitted ahead of a libel trial against The Sun newspaper over an April 2018 article in which Depp was described as a “wife-beater.” The article, which was titled “Gone Potty – How Can J.K. Rowling Be ‘Genuinely Happy’ Casting Wife-Beater Johnny Depp in the New ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Film?,” was referencing allegations made against the star by his former wife, actress Amber Heard, which he denies.
Paradis said in her statement: “I have known Johnny for more than 25 years. We’ve been partners for 14 years and we raised our two children together. Through all these years I’ve known Johnny to be a kind, attentive, generous, and non-violent person and father.”
She added: “He was never violent or abusive to me.”
Ryder, with whom Depp had a relationship in the 1990s, said in her statement: “I cannot wrap my head around (Heard’s) accusations. He was never, never violent towards me. He was never, never abusive at all towards me.”
In a statement after Wednesday’s hearing, a spokeswoman for Heard said: “In relation to Vanessa Paradis and Winona Ryder’s evidence, we are glad they did not have the same experience as Ms. Heard.
“However, one woman’s experience does not determine the experience of another woman.”
Depp and Heard met on the set of 2011 comedy “The Rum Diary,” and married in 2015. In 2016, Heard obtained a restraining order against Depp after accusing him of abuse, which he denied. They divorced in 2017, with Heard donating her $7 million settlement to charity.
The trial is set to take place at the Royal Courts of Justice in London over three weeks from July 7.
Depp has brought separate libel proceedings against Heard in the U.S., relating to an article in the Washington Post.