After the online launch of Grand Theft Auto 5, or GTA 5, on Oct. 1, gamers have once again taken to social networking sites and gaming forums to note the presence of celebrity doppelgangers in the video game, which include look-alikes of supermodel Kate Upton and rapper Kanye West.
Although Rockstar has denied that Upton is featured in GTA 5, it appears gamers are not willing to readily accept the explanation. A user went to the extent of using a bikini shot of Upton to create an image on Reddit to highlight the similarities between the original and the game's version.
"Some people tried telling me the girl from GTAV wasn't based off of Kate Upton," tchoob, a Reddit user, wrote. "I don't believe them."
Another user seconded this opinion writing: “I worked at a video game company for a few years and it was common practice for the artists to take images of celebs and use them in our games modifying them just enough so they wouldn't get sued.”
But, Shelby Welinder, who claims the character in the game was modeled on her, took to GTA 5 gaming forums to comment on the matter.
"It's nice to see all these people referring to me as a porn star and a slut," Welinder wrote, according to Now Gamer. "Quite entertaining to say the least. I worked for R* and signed a release that said I'd be listed in the game credits.”
She added: "I honestly don't care about (the rumor) because: 1) Doesn't benefit my modeling/acting portfolio in anyway, 2) I received my check already, 3) I was just happy to work for this company (I grew up playing GTA)"
In addition to Upton, GTA 5 gamers have also spotted a character similar to the “Yeezus” singer in the game, who according to Metro wears a dark T-shirt and chain, and sports a goatee similar to the one flaunted by the rapper.
This is not the first time West is making his presence felt in the popular game series. The in-game contemporary hip-hop radio station, The Beat 102.7, played West’s “Flashing Lights” in the fourth edition of the game.
Keerthi Mohan is an IBTimes reporter covering entertainment and human interest stories.