In a matter of months, Camille Vasquez took the world by storm. The Johnny Depp vs. Amber Heard trial had an extraordinary impact and attracted a record audience. She was at the center of one of the biggest entertainment stories of the year. Dubbed the ‘queen of cross-examination,’ the Hispanic attorney became a vital member of the litigation team that ended the trial with a jury ruling in favor of Depp.
The best way to describe Camille is as a person who is always smiling, full of life, kind, intelligent, close to her family, and passionate about her work. As a young person, Camille knew that her career goal was to represent and defend people. Therefore, she pursued higher education at the University of Southern California where she graduated magna cum laude. After earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication and Political Science, she completed her Juris Doctor from Southwestern Law School.
In 2018, Vasquez joined the international law firm Brown Rudnick as an associate in Litigation & Arbitration, becoming a trial lawyer in high-stakes disputes, including defamation cases, contract disputes, business-related torts, and employment-related claims. She has recently become Brown Rudnick’s newest partner.
Camille’s name began making headlines and gaining popularity on multiple social media platforms, including TikTok and Instagram, in 2022. Why? Her work in court during Depp’s defamation trial against his ex-wife Heard was remarkable. She was accompanied by a team of young, smart and professional lawyers, who clearly mastered the task at hand. She has won the hearts and respect of the actor’s fans, to the extent that they are even pushing her to become the first woman president!
Today, the world-renowned lawyer is among one of the most searched professionals on Google. Camille’s exceptionally private life awakened fans’ interest in wanting to know more, including how she met her longtime client Depp, her upbringing in a Hispanic household, her family, and her career.
HOLA! USA had the opportunity to spend a whole day with Camille and learn more about how the daughter of immigrant parents from Cuba and Colombia became a beacon of hope to aspiring professionals in the United States and worldwide.
The first-generation American also surprised the HOLA! team by bringing Marilia Vasquez, her mom, to the set. We experienced firsthand the loving relationship between the mother and daughter. Marilia confessed that she was incredibly proud of her two daughters and spoke about the importance of family for Camille.
Learn more about why Camille is a rising force and an Orgullo Latino.
“It’s been a surreal experience and, if I’m being honest, a tad overwhelming. And something I wasn’t prepared for. I was just doing my job.”
Well, thank you for asking. It’s been a surreal experience and, if I’m being honest, a tad overwhelming. And something I wasn’t prepared for. I was just doing my job. I had a feeling that because of the client and the nature of the case, it would kind of turn into something bigger than itself, but the attention to the legal team — on me specifically — has been interesting.
Private. I was just a hard-working lawyer, and thankfully, I was surrounded by a fantastic legal team of mostly under 40-year-olds. So we became close. We are very close friends; we trust each other. We challenge each other. And I can’t say enough about what a fantastic group of lawyers I had the privilege to work with. My life was very vivid, obviously, but also focused on work and the people I had the privilege of working with.
“He [Johnny] was able to tell his story and was infinitely grateful; he was moved. We all were. I still get a bit emotional about it —to give him his life back.”
I’ve worked for Johnny [Depp] for the last four and a half years. I’ve worked on all the matters that the firm has handled. And when we filed this case, I think it was just a natural fit for me to take the leading role. I was one of the few women on the team initially. And having an experience with Johnny and knowing his background, his story, and knowing him made sense to staff me on this case.
Ben [Benjamin Chew] and I worked closely, and then I started recruiting different people at the firm that I thought could bring a different perspective and other skills, individuals skills. We have some fantastic writers; we have some strategic thinkers. And it just turned into this magical team of lawyers that we can work with.
The court was very kind to provide us with a breakout room that we use for lunch and meetings. We FaceTimed him; he was so relieved, so happy, and grateful. It was nice to see him smile. A mutual friend of ours and I were speaking, and he said, ‘I haven’t seen Johnny smile like that in six years.’ And it’s true.
There’s a piece to him now that he just didn’t have before. He was able to tell his story and was infinitely grateful; he was moved. We all were. I still get a bit emotional about it —to give him his life back.
“And then we get the verdict. It’s overwhelmingly positive for Johnny [Depp], and we immediately got him on the phone. So we collected ourselves, and Ben and I decided we should go outside. Then when we were inside the elevator —it was a very warm day on the court, and we were heading downstairs, it broke!”
I called my parents on the way back to the hotel where we were all staying. I spoke to my sister and her husband and their baby. She was saying, ‘Bravo, tia.’ I got a picture of her wearing a little t-shirt that says, ‘Camille is my lawyer.’ My boyfriend was with me at the trial.
When we got a notification that the verdict would be read, we were in a very intense game of Monopoly. And despite how intense it was, we quickly threw all our money. And then we had a little dance party to get our wiggles out.
And then we get the verdict. It’s overwhelmingly positive for Johnny [Depp], and we immediately got him on the phone. So we collected ourselves, and Ben and I decided we should go outside. Then when we were inside the elevator —it was a very warm day on the court, and we were heading downstairs, it broke! We thought we would be stuck there, and thankfully the boys managed to push the door, and we got off downstairs. So we were able to give the statement; it was a day I’ll never forget.
“They [my parents] always say, ‘We’re not leaving you with much, but we’re leaving you with your education. And that’s something that no one can take away from you.”
Yes! I’m very grateful to the firm for promoting me. I’m thankful they see my dedication to my work, clients, and team. This is not something anybody can do alone. And I give credit where credit is due, and I can’t say enough good things about this team of lawyers. We worked so seamlessly together; I don’t think they want to break up the band. I think they want to keep us together, and you know it’s very important to me, especially that I get to work with people that I respect, that I look up to, and that those people are at the firm.
I just got off the phone with my mom. And I was like, ‘Mom, please stop crying.’ They’re both just overwhelmed with excitement and happiness. They both left their countries. My mom is Cuban. My father is Colombian. To give their daughters — I have a younger sister. We’re 15 months apart. We’re pretty close in age — an opportunity for a better life.
They always say, ‘We’re not leaving you with much, but we’re leaving you with your education. And that’s something that no one can take away from you.’ And I think they never wanted us to have to rely on anyone. And that’s their gift to my sister and me. I think they did a good job. My sister is a doctor, and I’m a lawyer, so I’m just eternally grateful to them. They’re the best parents anyone could ask for.
BONUS CONTENT: WATCH CAMILLE’S INTERVIEW
“We were born in California, both of us. I was born in Northern California, and my sister in Los Angeles. We are first-generation Americans.”
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To stay humble and be grateful for all the sacrifices they have made. I think working hard is something that they instilled in both of us. There will always be people and forces kind of working against you because of your last name or how you look, etc. For them, it was essential that we learned the language. We’re proud of where our parents came from, but also it’s a testament to the fact that we are Americans.
We were born in California, both of us. I was born in Northern California, and my sister in Los Angeles. We are first-generation Americans.
I love Cuban food! El mojo (marinade) is so yummy!
I can make some Cuban dishes. I can make Picadillo, Ropa Vieja. But you know what? They’re similar. The sazon (seasoning) on both Cuban and Colombian food has. I love them both.
I do. It is my first language.
I can sing. It’s not something that I do anymore. But you might find some videos maybe if you dig far enough. I did a lot of musical theater growing up. I have a funny story. My father worked for Hilton Hotels his whole career, and we lived at the Anaheim Hilton Towers, and there was an Italian restaurant, and on the weekends, they had Jerry and Victoria, a duo singing and playing the piano. They’re such close friends of my family. And I would sing every night I was there, The Little Mermaid’s ‘Part of Your World’ on her lap. One of my oldest memories is that as I got a little bit older, she would make a joke like, ‘You’re getting bigger,’ while sitting me on her lap.
“If I could be an inspiration for other young women, especially Hispanic women and Latinas, then it’s all worth it. At the end of the day, that’s what’s important.”
I love to travel. I love to eat at different restaurants, try different cuisines, and just spend time with my loved ones. Nothing makes me happier than being around family or friends over a really good meal and a glass of wine. That’s what I enjoy doing. I love hosting dinner parties and being around people; I’m very social. I think that’s probably the Hispanic side of me. I like being around people. It just makes me happy. But I’m much more of a homebody than you know. I enjoy being home and being surrounded by people that I love.
To follow their dreams and to be committed to them. My goal was always to be an advocate —I think I was born to be an advocate. I’ve been told I talk a lot since I was a young girl. When I feel passionate about something, I take it very seriously, and I think it’s about following your dreams, sticking to your guts, and not being afraid to be confident and do what’s right.
If I could be an inspiration for other young women, especially Hispanic women and Latinas, then it’s all worth it. At the end of the day, that’s what’s important.
NOTE: This interview was condensed and edited for clarity purposes.
CREDITS CAMILLE VASQUEZ PHOTOSHOOT
Photo: Jesús Cordero
Stylist: Emma Pritchard | Coral Finnie (Assistant)
Hair / Makeup: Jamie Harper
Video/BTS: Daniel Neira
Argent (black suit)
Alina Anwar (white suit)
LilySilk (blue shirt + skirt)
Voyette (sparkly snake print stiletto)