Update - May 11
We reached out to Daniel Lindholm regarding his statements, as he has since delated his video and posted on social media that he was merely speculating on the situation.
He told VG247: “I was speaking on a hypothetical level about Fei Long, which is not fact.” He also clarified that the sources he cited as being close to the Lee family were in fact based on pre-existing news. “When it comes to the family of Mr. Lee, it has been a discussion for years, especially for Quentin Tarantino for the way he portrayed Mr. Lee in bad light, which was not appreciated. That is a fact and something the family have been protecting for a long time.”
Landholm also insists that “the information I had was not from Capcom” and that his statements were purely speculative.
It’s a tragic day for Street Fighter fans, as one of the series’ more beloved side characters may not be appearing in any future game from here one out. The casualty in question is Fei Long, the fighter based heavily on Bruce Lee, who according to Street Fighter 5 composer Daniel Lindholm has fallen foul of a recent change of heart by the Lee family regarding humorous depictions of the famous martial artist.
He brought this up during a Youtube livestream Q&A on the subject of Street Fighter 5 music, in response to a particular query regarding what they’d do with Karen’s theme, which then linked into what they’d heard regarding Fei Long’s fate.
“I do have other sources, not only [from] Capcom, but friends of mine in the U.S., who are very close friends with the Lee family. They have basically said that any kind of resemblance to Mr. Bruce Lee is now omitted for comedic effect. It needs to be honourable. That’s why we won’t see Fei Long again. Ever.”
This, if true, is obviously sad news for fans of the character. For those who didn’t get a chance to mess around with the fire-fisted fighter, he was a fun addition to Super Street Fighter II back in 1993 who later returned with the revival of the series in Street Fighter 4’s Super version.
An obvious homage to Bruce Lee, the character typically wasn’t played for laughs, instead staying serious and fight-focused throughout his numerous appearances. He’s not the only fighting game character who takes direct inspiration from the infamous martial artist, as Tekken’s Marshal Law also stands out as a shameless (and frankly more comedic) depiction.
Nonetheless, there’s been no official statement on whether Daniel’s claims are legitimate. We reached out to Capcom in an attempt to verify these claims, to which a Capcom spokesperson responded: “We do not comment on rumour and/or speculation”. As such, all we can do is scour future releases for signs of life from this popular character with our fingers crossed.
For more Street Fighter articles, check out our impressions of Street Fighter V’s brilliant new graphics mode added to the latest major update, as well as our report from earlier in the year on Capcom’s licensing agreement and the reaction from tournament organisers.