Brown Rudnick Partner Camille Vasquez is an attorney to the stars and a star to the public, but her focus is advocating for her clients first and foremost

Two hours after her interview with Hispanic Executive, Camille Vasquez, along with the rest of the world, discovered that streaming service Tubi planned to release Hot Take: The Depp/Heard Trial, a recounting of the most-followed legal case across the world since OJ Simpson’s murder trial.

The creators wrote, produced, and filmed the movie in only three months following the June 1, 2022, judgment determining that actor Amber Heard had defamed Johnny Depp by alleging domestic violence in an op-ed in the Washington Post. While claiming no accompanying Oscar nominations, the film’s production became one of many forthcoming instances that would, once again, launch Vasquez back into the spotlight.

The Brown Rudnick partner, whose outfits and personal life have been made the stuff of every gossip page across the world since taking on Depp’s case, didn’t ask for any of this. Imagine if tomorrow, you found out that someone from an ABC firefighter drama was going to play you doing your job.

It’s important for me to get to know the person I’m representing, so that I can do my job well and make their voice heard.


This isn’t the kind of thing that excites Vasquez, and maybe that’s part of why she got the job representing Depp. “Happiness, to me, is just to be able to do a good job for my clients, people who often become my friends and people that I care about very deeply,” Vasquez explains. “That’s what inspires me. I want to be their voice and their advocate.”

Over an hour-long conversation, Vasquez speaks confidently but kindly. She doesn’t name drop any of the A-list celebrities, music industry executives, athletes, and billionaires she has represented. And she’s a little embarrassed to talk about how well she can sing The Little Mermaid’s classic song, “Part of Your World” (more on that later). If there is one thing this writer walked away with, it’s the belief that Vasquez never imagined she’d be the subject of millions of TikToks, fan sites, and fashion guides. It’s not something with which she’s all that comfortable, let alone something she set out to do. This is where she is now, however, and she will use her newfound celebrity to inspire women (especially Latinas) to pursue their dreams.

Hotel California

There are some parts of Vasquez’s early life that would make for good television, however. Vasquez and her sister Shari are the daughters of immigrants. Their father came from Colombia, and their mother was a passenger on the “Freedom Flights” from Cuba in the sixties. Vasquez’s parents met while learning to speak English together in Los Angeles.

Vasquez’s father began his career working the night shift at a local Los Angeles Hilton Hotel front desk. He eventually earned his way up to overseeing all of the Hiltons in Central and South America.

“Our father traveled an incredible amount,” the attorney remembers. “We used to joke that his commute was to and from LAX. But both he and my mother instilled a sense of hard work. We both did well in school, which was a significant point of pride for them, because they were able to provide an education in the United States for their daughters.”

While Vasquez’s mother stayed at home to raise her children, she didn’t seek the same for her two girls. They were both encouraged, heavily, to become professionals in their own right, with Vasquez becoming a lawyer and her younger sister serving as a pediatric physician.

“My mother always said, ‘We may not be leaving you with a lot, but we’re going to leave you with an education,’” the lawyer says.

There is one detail of Vasquez’s upbringing that is unrelatable. Because their father worked so often, the family routinely lived in the Anaheim Hilton and Towers at least a week or two out of the month.

“We didn’t realize how lucky we were, just two girls running around a hotel,” Vasquez says. “But we also had to grow up quickly, because this was our father’s place of employment, and we learned that how you present yourself isn’t just a reflection of you but of your entire family. We had to grow up very fast in that way.”

But that didn’t keep Vasquez from finding her voice. The future attorney to the stars would get up at the Hilton’s on-site restaurant with in-house musicians Victoria and Jerry to sing “Part of Your World,” likely melting everyone’s hearts and foreshadowing her own time in the spotlight.

No Overnight Success

After graduating from law school, Vasquez had a choice to make. Would she return to her family’s home in Orange County or venture into LA proper?

“My first job was not going to pay that much, so I made the responsible decision to come back home to Orange County,” Vasquez says. “It turned out to be a wonderful decision, because it was a fantastic place to learn. I really got thrown in the deep end: I did my first deposition in my first year of practice. I got to do my first trial at that job. I’m not sure I would have had those opportunities had I gone straight to one of the big, white-shoe firms.”

Despite her experience and expanding practice, Vasquez had intense reservations about the track her life was taking. The intense hours, the incredibly hard work, and still not being able to afford to move out of her family’s home was taking its toll on the young lawyer. But she stayed the path. In 2018, she joined the firm Brown Rudnick, and the rest is highly publicized history.


Camile Vasquez may now be a lawyer to the stars, but even she had to experience her first trial at some point. She winces when asked.

“My first trial . . . I lost that trial, actually,” Vasquez remembers, smiling. “But it taught me so much about what’s important to a jury. I was able to voir dire the jury and help select who was going to be on the panel. It really taught me about trusting my gut. I think I have a good sense about people, and that first trial taught me to trust it. It was a turning point for me.”

I was able to accomplish something on a national stage when people might have not thought of me as the first choice for the job.


All Eyes on Camille Vasquez

Vasquez had just arrived at Brown Rudnick when senior partners asked her to work on a new case going to trial in three months’ time in document and trial team prep. The partners invited her to meet their client, Johnny Depp, in Los Angeles. “I think the reason we hit it off so well was that I wasn’t really familiar with his work,” Vasquez says. “I still haven’t seen, probably, most of his films. Not that I’m not a fan, but I just wasn’t a super fan.”

The lawyer handled all of Depp’s litigation from then on. She got to know his business, and more importantly, his life. The defamation case was a chance for her to act on behalf of someone who had truly become a friend. That was never more apparent than in her viral cross-examination of Amber Heard during the trial.

“This goes back to being an advocate and being a friend,” Vasquez explains. “I had the opportunity to confront someone that had committed so many wrongs toward my client, and I was able to be his voice in that moment. It was a chance to demonstrate all the inconsistencies in [Heard’s] testimony and reveal who the real bad actor was. It was something I will never forget, and I thank Johnny for trusting me to do it.”

Vasquez says engaging in a trial this personal for Depp raised the stakes. Given her successful trial outcome and full dance card of high-profile clients, she says working with Depp has taught her a very valuable experience about those who live under the spotlight of fame.

“This sounds cliché, but you do have to understand that these are still real people with problems,” the attorney explains. “Some of them might seem bigger or more expensive, but they are still problems that affect a person, the human being, the same way that they affect you. For me, it’s important to understand what’s really bothering them about these problems. I still use the same criteria when vetting my clients. It’s important for me to get to know the person I’m representing, so that I can do my job well and make their voice heard.”


When asked about formative lessons learned from her Cuban mother and Colombian father, Camille Vasquez is very reflective.

“While my mother stayed home and my father very much acted as the head of the family, they didn’t encourage us to live those gender roles,” Vasquez says. “My parents, especially my mother, encouraged us to lead whatever kind of life we wanted. I don’t think there’s anything harder than staying home to raise children, and I think she wanted us to have the opportunity to do something different if we chose.”

Stick to your convictions. In all things, stick to your convictions.


The Best Person for the Job

Vasquez says that whatever path her career took, her goals remained the same: inspire her community, especially young women. She hopes that her big moment in the spotlight can inspire Latinas to believe that they don’t have to have a certain kind of last name to become successful. Their hair doesn’t have to look a certain way.

“I was able to accomplish something on a national stage when people might have not thought of me as the first choice for the job,” Vasquez says. “I was given the opportunity, because I was the best person for the job. I was the hardest working, and I was the most prepared. I hope what translates here is that if you work hard and find some opportunities, you can rise to the occasion.”

The lawyer recognizes that being of Hispanic descent means, at least statistically, that there will be more challenges thrown her way. She knew it required her to overprepare and overdeliver, but that preparation also gave her the confidence to forge forward.

Vasquez says she regularly seeks out inspiring people and studies them; she’s a student of style and communication. Whenever she finds something that makes sense for her, she adopts it as her own. The lawyer hopes younger women may be able to take a thing or two from her approach and apply it to their lives.

And while her phone won’t stop ringing, Vasquez says the same things remain her north stars: her family, her friends, and her job.

“I’m so grateful to still have my parents and to be able to go to them for advice,” Vasquez says. “I can ask my mom what I should wear to an event or ask my dad for career advice. They’re on my own board of directors. Everyone should have a board, and I’m so lucky I can count my family on mine.”

That leads to the last question: What advice would Vasquez like to give a younger version of herself? The one struggling in the job, unsure if the law was the right choice?

“The first is that everything is going to be all right,” Vasquez says, laughing. “That’s a big one. And as simple as this may sound, I would just tell myself to keep going. Keep doing what you’re doing. Keep working hard, because that work will pay off. And finally, stick to your convictions. In all things, stick to your convictions.”













Subscribe Today

Support independent Latino-owned media by subscribing to our magazine.