A French appeals court has overturned a judgment against Quantic Dream, the maker of Quantic Dream Heavy rain, Detroit: becoming humanand other prestigious titles that founder David Cage and himself accused in a series of press reports in early 2018 of tolerating racism, sexism and harassment in the workplace.
The successful appeal overturned a July 2018 ruling in favor of a former employee suing Quantic Dream, alleging a toxic workplace had displaced her from her job. Cage and other studio executives vehemently denied the claims and reports submitted to Le Monde, Mediapart and Canard PC in France this January.
in the a statement released on SaturdayQuantic Dream cited the Paris Court of Appeal ruling as a justification for the studio and a rejection of a so-called smear campaign carried out in the press and on social media.
“These allegations, which have been formally denied by the company, its managers, its staff representatives and employees, and which have contradicted the reality of objectively verifiable facts, have seriously damaged the studio’s honor and reputation,” said Quantic Dream.
In the French legal system, the Paris Court of Appeal is one step below the court of last resort, in this case the Court of Cassation. It is not known whether parties intend to appeal or what the likelihood is that the court will hear the matter.
The Quantic Dream statement also pointed to three other judgments delivered in January 2018 and November 2019. “First of all, it was undeniably confirmed that there was no“ toxic ”atmosphere in the company, that no discrimination had taken place and that management had immediately taken the necessary measures and became aware of certain problematic photomontages on the same day. “
A series of altered digital images were central to all legal proceedings and media allegations. The articles alleged that the images circulated in the studio turned the staff into sex scenes or Nazi uniforms. The Paris Court of Appeals ruled that none of the images the plaintiff was involved in were homophobic, racist, or degrading towards that plaintiff. More importantly, the court said there was no link between posting degrading pictures involving other employees and that employee’s departure.
The studio said the April 7th judgment by the Paris Court of Appeals “dismissed all of the worker’s claims and required him to pay Quantic Dream substantial damages.” GamesIndustry.biz reported this number $ 10,138.
A previous judgment involving another plaintiff ordered Quantic Dream to pay $ 7,000 in restitution and legal fees for a former employee who looked like they were saying a Nazi salute. However, the court denied the worker’s claim for $ 114,000 and finding that he had been wrongly fired, which would have further harmed the studio.
After the reports hit the media in 2018, Cage slapped the releases, and the studio promised to clear his name in court. Cage called the allegations “ridiculous, absurd and grotesque” and urged the public to “judge my work” before calling him or his studio racist or homophobic.