The following year, Heard starred in the indie drama The River Why and continued her work in the horror genre in John Carpenter's The Ward, which was a critical and commercial disappointment.Carpenter has later stated that he was disappointed in the film but "loved working with Amber and would work with her again without hesitation." Heard appeared in no new films until 2013, when she starred in the thriller Paranoia, the action-comedy Machete Kills, and the satirical drama Syrup. Her only film release in 2014, the action-thriller 3 Days to Kill, was a box office success but panned by critics.
The film was finally released in 2018, and was both a critical and commercial flop.
In 2017, Heard acted as part of an ensemble cast in the indie film I Do...
That year, she won a Breakthrough Award at the Hollywood Film Festival.
Her other 2008 film releases were the critically panned Bret Easton Ellis adaptation The Informers, in which she was part of an ensemble cast, and All the Boys Love Mandy Lane, an unconventional slasher film in which she had one of her first leading roles.
From 2015 to 2017, Heard was married to her The Rum Diary co-star Johnny Depp.
Their divorce drew significant media attention, as she alleged that he was physically and verbally abusive towards her throughout most of their relationship. She made her film debut in a minor role in the sports drama Friday Night Lights (2004), followed by small supporting roles in films such as Drop Dead Sexy (2005), North Country (2005), Side FX (2005), Price to Pay (2006), You Are Here (2006), and Alpha Dog (2006), and guest starring spot in an episode of the police procedural Criminal Minds.
Heard's earliest acting work included appearances in two music videos, Kenny Chesney's "There Goes My Life" and Eisley's "I Wasn't Prepared", and small supporting roles in the television series Jack & Bobby (2004), The Mountain (2004), and The O. Heard's first starring role was playing the main character's love interest in The CW's teen drama Hidden Palms, which the network wanted to replace summer reruns of other series aimed for teenage audiences.
The series premiered in the United States on May 30, 2007 to mixed to negative reviews.
Its director, Jonathan Levine, said he had chosen Heard for the title role because "there was a certain type of beauty and a certain type of innate intelligence that Amber brought to it that is not something you find every day.
Certainly, not something you would find in somebody her age.
Born and raised in Texas, Heard made her film debut in a minor supporting role in the sports drama Friday Night Lights (2004), followed by a series of other small roles in television and film.