Update #3: Capcom has finally provided a response to the bizarre saga surrounding the character of Fei Long.
"That whole Bruce Lee estate information they mentioned turned out to not be real. I can't say whether he's coming or not, but there are definitely no legal issues."
So there you go! Seems it was all a fuss over nothing. Why the character never made it into Street Fighter V is unclear at this stage, but it at least seems obvious now that it's not in relation to any hypothetical legal issues.
Update #2: The Bruce Lee family has responded to the claim — which Lindholm says was "hypothetical thinking" (see the first update below) — via Twitter:
Update #1: Lindholm has been in touch with Nintendo Life via Twitter DM offering further clarification of his position:
"The opinion was mine and only playful hypothetical thinking. It was just my opinion, not Capcom's. And my source is an independent third party."
Original Story [Tue 10th May, 2022 20:15 BST]: Street Fighter fans might want to pour one out for a favourite character that's been a part of the series ever since Super Street Fighter II, at least according to Street Fighter 5 composer Daniel Lindholm. As you'll have seen if you read the headline and saw the image above, it seems that Fei Long may not feature at all in future Street Fighter games.
The character Fei Long, a martial artist and action film star from Hong Kong, is Capcom's tribute to legendary martial artist and action film star Bruce Lee, and it seems that the Lee family has recently changed its mind when it comes to non-serious depictions of the deceased actor.
As discussed in the composer's streamed YouTube Q&A (see below) on 7th May, comedic interpretations are reportedly a sticking point. Lindholm says that depictions must be 'honourable' from this point on:
A character that I know we won't see at all — there's been a lot of discussion about it — I mentioned earlier a character I would like to rewrite the music for would be Fei Long.
I do have other sources — not only Capcom, but friends of mine in the U.S., who are very close friends with the Lee family — and they have basically said that any kind of resemblance to Mr. Bruce Lee is now omitted for comedic effect, comic stuff. It needs to be honourable.
That’s why we won’t see Fei Long again. Ever.
You can listen to the composer discussing Fei Long in the video below:
VG247 reached out to Capcom in order to verify the composer's claims, to which a Capcom spokeperson said "We do not comment on rumour and/or speculation".
While it's unclear what prompted this change in approach from the Lee family, it's certainly not impossible that the backlash to his depiction in Quentin Tarantino's 2019 film Once Upon A Time In Hollywood may have caused the family to reconsider depictions of him (or characters obviously inspired by him) in media.
A shame for Street Fighter fans, that's for sure. If this information is accurate, we'll just have to hope that the Lee family reconsiders its position before the release of Street Fighter 6.
Let us know below if you're a Fei Long main and if you'll miss the character in future Street Fighters.