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Fake CNN Headline Reports Johnny Depp Organizing ‘Defamation’ Tour With Kyle Rittenhouse

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Johnny Depp is organizing a tour with Kyle Rittenhouse to “spread awareness” about the “dangers” of defamation.

Fact Check

In early June 2022, a jury in Fairfax County, Virginia, sided (mostly) with actor Johnny Depp in his defamation lawsuit against ex-wife and fellow actor Amber Heard.

Shortly after the verdict was announced, a mischievous social media user produced a fake CNN headline that read, “Johnny Depp rumored to be organizing national tour with Kyle Rittenhouse to spread awareness on the dangers of defamation.”

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CNN never published any such headline, nor did any other news outlet, as the story isn’t true. The fake headline was likely created with the intent of satire. After Depp’s victory, Rittenhouse did say Depp’s legal victory inspired him to sue those who called him a murderer.

Rittenhouse was acquitted on homicide charges and other related counts after shooting and killing two people and wounding a third during civil unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, in 2020. Rittenhouse argued self-defense.

Like the Depp case, the Rittenhouse trial was deeply divisive. Depp’s case, its societal impact, and its outcome were viewed by many as a backlash against the #MeToo movement. The Rittenhouse shooting took place during protests and riots over the police shooting and wounding of Jacob Blake, a Black Kenosha resident, amid a summer of Black Lives Matter protests.

Sources:

Bosman, Julie. “Kyle Rittenhouse Acquitted on All Counts.” The New York Times, 19 Nov. 2021. NYTimes.com, https://www.nytimes.com/live/2021/11/19/us/kyle-rittenhouse-trial.

CBS News. “Kyle Rittenhouse Says He’s Inspired by Johnny Depp Verdict to File Defamation Suits against Those Who Called Him Murderer.” 2 June 2022. https://www.cbsnews.com/chicago/news/kyle-rittenhouse-says-hes-inspired-by-johnny-depp-verdict-to-file-defamation-suits-against-those-who-called-him-murderer/.

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