London - Johnny Depp has denied being a "violent man" in his first interview about accusations he beat his ex-wife, describing his "hurt" at the "perverse situation inflicted on me".
Actress Amber Heard, 32, said the Pirates of the Caribbean star was abusive throughout their two-year marriage and applied for a domestic violence restraining order in 2016.
But 55-year-old Depp blamed his fall from grace on "Hollywood power-mongers" trying to "shut him up".
The actor, who is said to have lost almost all of his £500-million fortune, bemoaned the "ludicrous" claims about his turbulent personal life.
"The last three or four years has felt like a perverse situation that was inflicted on me," he told GQ magazine. "It hurts. The thing that hurt me is being presented as something that you’re really as far away from as you could possibly get, you know?"
Heard, who went on to date Tesla chief executive Elon Musk, withdrew claims father-of-two Depp had assaulted her in a drunken argument after they came to an out-of-court settlement. She received £5.5-million in one of Hollywood’s ugliest divorce cases, which she pledged to donate to domestic violence charities.
Depp, who will next month appear as dark wizard Grindelwald in JK Rowling’s Harry Potter spin-off series Fantastic Beasts, has been accused of increasingly erratic behaviour over the past year, conducting rambling and incoherent interviews.
As well as his marriage troubles, the star recently reached an undisclosed settlement in a £19-million lawsuit with his former managers, who he accused of driving him into £30-million of debt. The Management Group counter-sued, claiming Depp blew his millions on luxury homes, private jets and a £23 000-a-month wine habit.
Discussing claims he is a violent man, the actor continued: "To harm someone you love? As a kind of bully? No, it didn’t, it couldn’t even sound like me."
Admitting he was "never going to be a Cinderella", he accused Hollywood heavyweights of tarnishing his reputation. Depp went on: "This vile f***ing circus. But did it stop all the power-mongers in Hollywood who were interested in shutting me up? Big money was being thrown about. People suing me at every opportunity …
"It felt like within a very, very short period of time that suddenly this version – for lack of a better word – of Cinderella had been immediately turned into the beast. He’s Quasimodo."Daily Mail