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Sexual harassment and assault

The heads of one of the biggest video game studio have been accused of inappropriate behaviour

Anonymous employees mention the heads of Quantic Dream, David Cage and Guillaume de Fondaumière, in particular, describing a series of inappropriate situations involving them specifically

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 16 January, 2018, 2:07pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 16 January, 2018, 2:10pm

By Edoardo Maggio

Reports from a number of French publications (which we saw via Eurogamer) have made serious allegations about a reportedly “unhealthy studio culture” at Quantic Dream, a game development studio that primarily focuses on titles for Sony’s PlayStation.

Some anonymous staff members mentioned the two studio heads in particular, David Cage and Guillaume de Fondaumière, and accused them of “inappropriate behaviour, overworking staff and colluding in — or at least turning a blind eye to — a schoolboy culture involving sexist and racist jokes,” Eurogamer reported.

The three French publications from which Eurogamer translated the information — national newspaper Le Monde, Canard PC and Mediapart — have published various Photoshopped images, including some that are reportedly displayed on the studio’s walls, which depict inappropriate and sexual images.

“The most shocking [images] present Quantic Dream’s collaborators in sexual positions, adorned with homophobic or sexist slurs, or even made up to look like Nazis,” said Le Monde’s report, as translated by Eurogamer.

The original reports say that a collection of around 600 of these images were circulated in internal emails, with Cage and de Foundaumière as recipients. Cage in particular is described as a hard person to work with; he’s somewhat ironically referred to as “Papa,” “Sun King,” and even “God” internally, the reports said.

Cage has been accused of a lack of consideration for his female colleagues — 83 per cent of people working at Quantic Dream are reportedly male — consistently making remarks, even in the presence of his wife, and inappropriate comments about female actresses working with him for his games. There are also accusations of demanding long hours and not listening to others.

“David Cage has a very particular viewpoint on how he runs his studio, which in his own words he sees as a private, or a semi-private, space,” one former employee said. “He feels he has the right to say whatever he wants, it’s his place.”

Cage has also been accused of making homophobic and racist jokes. Cage and de Foundaumière, on their parts, have strongly denied all of the allegations.

“You want to talk about homophobia?” Cage reportedly said. “I work with Ellen Page, who fights for LGBT rights. You want to talk about racism? I work with Jesse Williams, who fights for civil rights in the USA ... Judge me by my work.”

de Foundaumière, who was accused of making advances towards staff, said: “I will be extremely clear: It’s absolutely false. None of any [sic] of this happened at any evening event.”

The two have also issued a formal statement on behalf of the company, saying that “inappropriate conducts or practices have no place at Quantic Dream,” and that “it is of utmost importance to us that we maintain a safe environment.”

Quantic Dream hasn’t responded to Business Insider’s request for comment. You can read their full public statement below.

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Read the original article at Business Insider