Starbreeze Studios and publisher Sony Online Entertainment do not want to be associated with a video promoting a contest seeking "women" to star in a proposed movie based on the popular Payday game. The CEO of Starbreeze went out of his way to explain to Games Industry International this morning that the video featuring an office visit to the Overkill Software is not representative of the company's views. Some have called out the video featuring Top Model Sweden contestants Angner Sophie and Nina Strauss sexist in tone for its use of sexual language and jokes.
"The YouTube piece that was spread today was an external pitch made to us (amongst many) almost nine months ago," Starbreeze CEO Bo Andersson told GamesIndustry International. "It was related to the potential Payday movie and not game. We did not design it or distribute it. Part was shot in our office but then cut externally. We felt it did not portray our values as a company in any way after seeing the final cut. Therefore it was rejected some 9 months ago. Unfortunately it ended up on the internet as part of someone's CV (outside of our company)."
"We have never as a company depicted women this way nor shall we in the future," he added.
Sony Online Entertainment, which published Overkill's Payday: The Heist, also distanced itself from the video.
"SOE had nothing to do with this video or contest," a spokesperson told GamesIndustry International. "Moreover, this contest is linked to the upcoming film (not the original game), with which SOE has had zero involvement."
The video in question (which you can watch to your left – likely NSFW) features Top Model Sweden contestants Angner Sophie and Nina Strauss playing Payday in the Overkill offices, chatting with unnamed Overkill employees and asking contestants to apply for "The Payday Girl Contest." Jokes about "penis" and being lesbians abound…
Overkill is working on Payday 2, which is being published by 505 Games.