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GTA 5 Cover Girl: Real story of the Bikini Selfie icon Shelby Welinder

GTA 5 Cover Girl Shelby Welinder
GTA 5 Cover Girl Shelby Welinder
Rahul Bhushan
ANALYST
Modified 15 Jun 2020
Feature

Rockstar Games' GTA franchise has always been at the forefront of gaming and is one of the most successful gaming franchises of all time.

Although, the GTA franchise is not as old and steeped in the history of gaming such as Mario or Legend of Zelda. Seldom do other games have had such an impact on pop culture and the media.

The franchise's brash and in-your-face approach has always endeared it to the fans. Some others have been quick to dismiss the GTA franchise as mindless, violent, and manipulative entertainment.

While it is somewhat true that some of the criticisms lobbed at the franchise was credible and ring true, such as the lack of solid female characters and objectification of women on their covers.

Some have argued that this is Rockstar's way of criticizing and parodying the needless and overdone sexualization of women in pop culture and media of today.

In 2014, post the release of GTA V, famous actress Lindsay Lohan filed a suit against Rockstar Games for using her likeness for the cover of GTA V.

Lindsay Lohan(left) filed a suit against Rockstar Games.
Lindsay Lohan(left) filed a suit against Rockstar Games.

The curious case of GTA 5 Cover Girl Shelby Welinder

Lindsay Lohan filed a suit against the gaming company giant claiming that they had used her likeness for the cover of GTA V without her permission.

The 4-year old suit was dropped by the court, citing that the case had been frivolous from the get-go, and did not have any merit to it. The court explained the cover featured a "generic twenty-something woman without any particular identifying physical characteristics."

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Fans on the forums speculated that while her likeness isn't based on Lindsay Lohan, it might be based on the famous model, Kate Upton.

Kate Upton (left) and GTA 5 Cover
Kate Upton (left) and GTA 5 Cover

However, Rockstar Games claimed that they did not use Kate Upton's likeness for the cover of GTA 5, and it was Shelby Welinder who modelled for the company for GTA 5.

Shelby Welinder was employed by Rockstar Games to pose for the cover shoot of GTA 5. Welinder even released a photo of her paycheck from Rockstar Games, proving that she was the girl on the cover of GTA V.

Shelby Welinder
Shelby Welinder's paycheck from Rockstar Games
Published 15 Jun 2020, 11:46 IST
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