‘Emotional’ Johnny Depp was left ‘soulless’ after being dumped by Winona Ryder

Johnny Depp Leaves The Grand Hotel in Birmingham

Today, June 9, 2022, is Johnny Depp’s 59th birthday. It has been an extremely tough year for the star, who has been battling his ex-wife Amber Heard in court over a defamation claim.

Unfortunately, this is just the latest sad circumstances surrounding the star’s love life. 

His biggest heartbreak to date came in the late 1980s when Depp, 26, and Ryder, 18, fell in love on the set for their movie Great Balls of Fire! A year later, they were both cast in Tim Burton’s horror-tinged fairytale, Edward Scissorhands, where their love really blossomed.

During filming, Depp got a tattoo on his arm which read: “Winona Forever” – something he later confessed he “did not” regret.

And before long, the pair were engaged. They were inseparable, they attended every industry event together and were frequently in the various gossip magazines being discussed.

Years later, Ryder revealed just how important her relationship was with the Pirates of the Caribbean star. 

She confessed: “When I met Johnny, I was a pure virgin. He changed that. He was my first everything.”

Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder got together in 1989 (Image: GETTY)

Johnny Depp winona ryder

Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder went everywhere together (Image: GETTY)

Ryder went into even more detail, saying: “My first real kiss. My first real boyfriend. My first fiancé. The first guy I had sex with. So he’ll always be in my heart. Forever.”

But things did not last. After just four years of being together, in 1993, Ryder and Depp split up.

A statement at the time said: “They’re young, and they grew apart.” But both halves of the couple went on to reveal more information about their split.

Depp said: “It’s very hard to have a personal life in this town. My relationship with Winona, it was my mistake to be as open as we were, but I thought if we were honest it would destroy that curiosity monster. Instead, it fed it, gave people license to feel they were part of it.”

The star was obviously hurt by what had happened. He even changed his “Winona Forever” tattoo to “Wino Forever”.

When he was asked if he regretted getting the tattoo in the first place, he had a great answer.

READ MORE: Pirates of the Caribbean: Johnny Depp return hopes boosted

Johnny Depp winona ryder

Johnny Depp and Winona got engaged in 1990 (Image: GETTY)

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“I think for me, these tattoos are a journal,” Depp revealed. “As opposed to writing it on a piece of paper, I just took the initiative and put it on my skin. So I wear my journal. But even though we’re not together anymore, it doesn’t take away from the honesty of when I got the tattoo.”

Months after Depp’s split with Ryder he was working with Burton once again on his next film, Ed Wood. But the eccentric director knew something was wrong with the star.

Burton said Depp would arrive at the set in the morning with tears rolling down his face.

He recalled: “I felt so bad. I asked him why it happened but all he said was: ‘It wasn’t her fault, it was mine.’ It wasn’t the same as Winona. I felt weird to be around him like he wasn’t acting like Johnny anymore.”

Burton added: “It’s almost like Winona took Johnny’s soul. Johnny’s love.”

Ryder was just as emotional about it all, however.

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Just after their split, Ryder confessed in an interview: “I had just had my first real breakup, the first heartbreak. Everybody else just thought I had everything in the world but inside I was completely lost.”

Years later, she explained just how badly she was affected by the break-up.

She said her mental health took a bad turn, and she was left as a danger to herself when she “fell asleep with a lit cigarette and woke up to flames” in her house.

Ryder recalled: “I was very depressed after breaking off my engagement with Johnny. I was embarrassingly dramatic at the time, but you have to remember I was only 19 years old.”

Still, there was no bad blood left between the two stars. She even defended him in his recent court battle.

When Depp was accused of domestic violence Ryder came to his aid.

She released a statement which read: “I understand that it is very important that I speak from my own experience, as I obviously was not there during his marriage to Amber, but, from my experience, which was so wildly different, I was absolutely shocked, confused and upset when I heard the accusations against him. The idea that he is an incredibly violent person is the farthest thing from the Johnny I knew and loved.”

She added: “I cannot wrap my head around these accusations. He was never, never violent towards me. He was never, never abusive at all towards me. He has never been violent or abusive towards anybody I have seen. I truly and honestly only know him as a really good man – an incredibly loving, extremely caring guy who was so very protective of me and the people that he loves, and I felt so very, very safe with him. I do not want to call anyone a liar but from my experience of Johnny, it is impossible to believe that such horrific allegations are true. I find it extremely upsetting, knowing him as I do.”

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