Actor Johnny Depp “threatened to kill” ex-wife Amber Heard “many times”, the US actress has claimed.
She described a “three-day hostage situation” during which she claimed Mr Depp was on a “drug and alcohol binge”.
Mr Depp, 57, is suing the publisher of the Sun over an article that referred to him as a “wife beater” – but the newspaper maintains it was accurate.
He denies 14 allegations of domestic violence on which News Group Newspapers is relying for its defence.
Ms Heard took to the witness stand at London’s High Court on the 10th day of the case, and her written witness statement was also submitted to the court.
In it, she accused Mr Depp of verbal and physical abuse including screaming, swearing, issuing threats, punching, slapping, kicking, head-butting and choking her, as well as “extremely controlling and intimidating behaviour”.
“Some incidents were so severe that I was afraid he was going to kill me, either intentionally, or just by losing control and going too far,” she said.
Ms Heard, 34, claimed Mr Depp had a “unique ability to use his charisma to convey a certain impression of reality” and “he is very good at manipulating people”.
“He would blame all his actions on a self-created third party instead of himself, which he often called ‘the monster’.
“He would speak about it as if it was another person or personality and not him doing all these things.”
She said in the beginning of their relationship, he would be “intensely affectionate, warm and charming” and it felt like she was “dating a king”.
Ms Heard, who was married to the film star from 2015 to 2017, said Mr Depp had pursued her romantically while they were filming The Rum Diary in 2009 and they spent time together sometimes with the director “just drinking wine and talking”.
But she said nothing happened between them at that point because she was in a relationship.
“After that shoot, I didn’t hear from him directly, although he would send me gifts,” she said.
The next time they saw each other was when they were promoting the same film in 2011. She said his publicist invited her to meet Mr Depp and the director in a hotel room for a drink, but when she got there it was just Mr Depp. “Our romantic relationship then began,” she said.
Her witness statement added: “When Johnny puts his attention on you, with all his intensity and darkness, it is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced.
“When I say he was dark, he had a violent and dark way of speaking: the way he talked about our relationship being ‘dead or alive’ and telling me that death was the only way out of the relationship.”
Ms Heard alleged that it is rare to see anyone say no to him. “I tried to, but it didn’t go down well,” she said.
‘Raw meat in nightgown’
In her statement, Ms Heard also described visiting Mr Depp in Australia in March 2015, while he was filming Pirates of the Caribbean, and described the trip as “like a three-day hostage situation”.
“Over the course of those three days, there were extreme acts of psychological, physical, emotional and other forms of violence,” she said.
“It is the worst thing I have ever been through. I was left with an injured lip and nose, and cuts on my arms.”
She claimed Mr Depp grabbed her neck, shoved her against the fridge, tore off her nightgown and pushed her against a bar.
“He was pressing so hard on my neck I couldn’t breathe. I was trying to tell him that I couldn’t breathe. I remember thinking he was going to kill me in that moment,” she said.