First Look: Black Eyed Peas' Taboo as Vega in Street Fighter
by Alex Billington
February 5, 2009
Let's just forget about Dragonball and focus on Street Fighter! No, that photo above is not Vega, but the one below is. One of our readers sent over two new photos from Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li tonight, one of which happened to be our first look at Black Eyed Peas' singer Taboo as the character Vega. I've also thrown up a comparison shot of the actual Vega from the video games, because it seems like this is a much less stylized version. I don't think it's right for me to critique the movie based on how he looks in a photo, because for all we know, he could kick some serious ass and we just haven't seen it yet!
Vega is a character from the Street Fighter video games that is allied with the villain M. Bison. He is a masked talon-wielding warrior from Spain who uses a personal fighting style combining Japanese Ninjutsu and Spanish bullfighting. As for how his story plays out in the movie, we're not really sure!
Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li is directed by ex-cinematographer Andrzej Bartkowiak, who directed Romeo Must Die, Exit Wounds, Cradle 2 the Grave, and Doom previously. The script was penned by up-and-coming screenwriter Justin Marks, who also penned screenplays for Masters of the Universe and Voltron. Hong Kong fight choreographer Dion Lam, who previously worked on The Matrix Trilogy, Spider-Man 2, and all of Bartkowiak's previous films, is handling the fight sequences. Fox is debuting Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li in theaters everywhere on February 27th. See you in theaters!
Reader Feedback - 39 Comments
He looks alright in the picture. But in the commercial he looks like the Jason X version of the Vega we all know and respect.
MrSammich on Feb 5, 2009
retoided. major pass
teyhtr on Feb 5, 2009
LOL they totally never understood the character first of all Vega is suppose to be tall and have a perfect physique and is suppose to be very handsome the reason he wears the mask is so his beautiful face does get scratch on it taboo is short scrawny and hideous looking great going
nelson on Feb 5, 2009
I would agree with #1. He looks like some futuristic Jason Voorhees. Why can't they just make him look like he did in the early 90's abomination.
Chris on Feb 5, 2009
I think ths is a better, creepier Vega. In fact, it would be even better if the mask was a little less... shiny?
Ironmonging on Feb 5, 2009
is that a blatant wolverine rip off or what?
????? on Feb 5, 2009
Weak!! Jay Tavare from the 1994 original will kick his ass any day!!! Tavare really WAS Vega!!!
Blue Silver on Feb 5, 2009
is there a problem with giving vega blonde hair
nelson on Feb 5, 2009
they are most likely trying to repeat the fight scene from the Street Fighter II Animated movie that was a classic fight. but the whole combat gear with the silver mask seems completely out of place. not to mention Taboo doesn't braid his hair in the movie, which may seem trivial but i feel it takes a lot away from the character not to mention it would totally be in the way during their fight.
The Delightful Deviant on Feb 5, 2009
OMG! at number 6# are you serious? How in the hell is this a blatant Wolverine rip off? This is Vega from the Street Fighter series!!! He is supposed to have freaking claws! Pay attention to the pic...Lol Im so tired of people saying that about this movie. But even though it doesnt look all that great Im going to see it just for entertainment value and also something that people probably dont know is that Taboo is skilled in martial arts and is an excellent break dancer so some of those flips and ridiculous moves that Vega pulls off might be not so far fetched with the right combination like that in a person
Primo! on Feb 5, 2009
@9 lol...most likely? hahaha...i really do hope that they try to emulate the animated fight scene between Chun-Li and Vega. i'd love to see Kristin Kreuk showering and then fight Vega in her panties, and then almost get raped! but i very much doubt it will even get close to that.
Matt Suhu on Feb 5, 2009
So Will.i.am and Taboo are acting, Fergie is doing her solo thing, what about the remaining Pea? I'm waiting on his directorial debut.
Lopretni on Feb 5, 2009
fox is so screwed
darrin on Feb 5, 2009
I hate the Black Eyed Peas and Taboo.....WTF?!
Conrad on Feb 5, 2009
#3 spot on! you couldn't be closer to the truth!
bltzie on Feb 5, 2009
Wasn't Vega supposed to be ... pretty?
hmm on Feb 5, 2009
Josh on Feb 5, 2009
true story. there are way too many exclamation marks floating around this article, and on the site in general. when i think of exclamation marks, i think of maybe like a car crash, or a baby being born, something that warrants, well, exclamation. and i'm not even downplaying the merits of a streetfighter movie in 2009 (of which there are effectively zero, by the way); i'm simply saying that a simple casting announcement with accompanying photo (one without context, for Guile's sakes) on a relatively minor film (see: february release), isn't really all that exciting, unless you're a huge fan of either black eyed peas, or 1994. if either, or both, of those two scenarios are causing all the fuss, then i suppose i'm just being silly.
Zach on Feb 5, 2009
MAJOR miss. Vega's personally my favorite character in the whole damn series and i couldn't be more disappointed... fuck.
Nick S. on Feb 6, 2009
I wish they could have found someone else. Vega is my favorite character, and I can not stand Black Eyed Peas.
mxr5150 on Feb 6, 2009
Everything about this film looks terrible imagine. Shockingly even the JCVD film looks closer to the world of SF. This will be just a poorly shot generic DTV quality action movie with some badly staged kung fu. Have the makers of this film even seen the game? Why does it look so dark and po faced? The whole vibe and look of the game is colourful and loud and bright and stylish! Can you imagine how amazing the film would be if they made a faithful live action version of this: http://www.gametrailers.com/player/44551.html?type=
Sumit on Feb 6, 2009
@11 She didn't almost get raped. She almost got killed. I don't know what version you saw...
L on Feb 6, 2009
@22 dumbass...after Vega beat the crap out of Chun-Li, he takes off his mask and says something along the lines of "i'm gonna have fun with you before i kill you." use your brain and try to figure out what that really means. and then she gets all angry and does her lightening kicks to his face, jumps up, holds something from the ceiling and uses her two legs to kick him out of the apartment through a wall into the street below. so yeah, i did see the correct version. lol...maybe you saw the "cut" kiddy version...hahahaha.
Matt Suhu on Feb 6, 2009
This is just embarressing. Its like hes playing dress up. Not really what Vega is about, or should look like, I mean hes a cool looking dude, but not Vega. Vega is creepy in the shovanistic, vain, self obsessed American Pyscho way, not the weird eyes and stern glance kind of way.
Calum on Feb 6, 2009
What do you expect when Andrzej Bartkowiak is the director. I hate all of his action movies, I find them Corny and Cheap. I love Jet Li, but hate all of his American movies... why? Partly because of Andrzej Bartkowiak! This will just be another cheap action flick with B cast actors. I'm predicting that it won't be that much better than JCVD's SF.
Omega728 on Feb 6, 2009
I miss Raul Julia
Dusty on Feb 6, 2009
@ 23 he actually says... "my hobby is to slowly peel the skin off the rabbits i catch, especially cute little bunnies like you, and my friend here is thirsty for blood."
The Delightful Deviant on Feb 6, 2009
Matt Suhu on Feb 6, 2009
lena on Feb 6, 2009
How come they didn't reboot the Street Fighter movie with Ryu as the main character? He's such a big part of the franchise and wasn't the main character in the first live film. Kristin Kreuk is attractive and Chun-Li is interesting but Ryu is the man and everyone quotes his moves: Ha-Doo-Kin! or what about Tatsumaki Senpuukyaku! People don't pronounce it like that though. BTW Vega sucks in this photo. Scrawny and not menacing at all. Not liking the silver. We'll see if the movie makes up for it.
gooner_nm on Feb 8, 2009
I'm with #10. Taboo is an accomplished b-boy, so pulling off Vega's acrobatics would not be a problem (if you doubt the athletic abilities of top-tier breakers, go rent Planet B-Boy). I really don't think there are a lot of actors who look like the arcade Vega, so people obsessing that Taboo doesn't look like Vega should just get over themselves. Now, I'm not expecting anything great concerning this movie. But, to me it screams popcorn flick! And with my expectations set on this modest level, I would go see this.
Imajicka1 on Feb 8, 2009
Nº 10 and 31, so what if taboo can jump and do the acrobatics? He's a terrible cast for Vega (Balrog in the japanese version) He's scrawny, short and downright Fugly (well... he is) Look here: http://www.absoluteanime.com/street_fighter/vega.htm and you'll find an adequate description for Vega's physique and personality, as depicted in the game and animated series. "Vega is a Spanish nobleman who studied the art of Ninjitsu and mixed it with his talents as a matador" "Vega is a handsome man and detests anything that is ugly. Beauty means power to him as he protects his face with a mask." So most likely taboo's interpretation on Vega will look like "The last of the Mohicans" meets "Carlos Mencia" with B-boying....Yuck! If it's about the acrobatics, then they should've cast a damn monkey to play Vega..Oh wait...they did.
Guy on Feb 20, 2009
So...yeah...what can i say that hasn't been said before...the worst vega cast evurrrrr.i mean, c'mon...have you guys ever seen a spanish dude? that guy does not look spanish...not one bit...he looks like a neanderthal,what's the deal with wearing a mask if your face is already fucked up? no offense but that guy looks more mexican than spanish...and that's something people don't seem to understand...spanish and mexicans are not the same!!!! spanish are europeans,not latins...that should have been a clue for casting some1 to play vega...this was the same mistake that turned into that creepy latino-looking guy in van damme's street fighter movie,horrible choice.WHAT THE F*CK IS WRONG WITH THESE GUYS WHO CAN'T GET A CASTING RIGHT!!!!! even American Pie's Stifler would be a better choice...and that's just f*cked up.
Mad Silent Bob on Feb 23, 2009
Long hair and the ability to break dance does NOT equal Vega! I mean they even got the hair color wrong, versions of Vega in the game the hair ranges from brown to blonde. The hair thing can be forgotten if at least the guy was handsome or something.... I just feel that the casting was way off on this one, its like they just said "Hey, lets get a short little mexican-looking guy to play Vega, no one would know the difference!" Jay Tavare in Van Dame's Street Fighter was amazingly accurate. youtube him you'll see what Im talking about. PS- Chris Klein made me throw up in my mouth with his horrible acting in this movie! (sorry I had to throw that in there)
Why!?! on Jul 14, 2009
taboo is so sexy
kk on Aug 19, 2009
@10, 31, and 35 - I'm right there with you. @32 - Let me start off with saying that I absolutely dislike the Black Eyed Peas, so there's no bias here. I'm just giving an honest and fair assessment. I think that Taboo could actually play a great Vega. I think it was more of the fact that he didn't prepare for the part as well as he should have. Taboo has the correct acrobatics to actually pull off a great Vega. You have to understand Taboo's situation. The costume that he had to dawn was very incorrect and the writers scripted a horrible plot. Say they were to remake this movie (aka pull off another Incredible Hulk stunt), I believe that if they give Taboo enough time to build his physique for the character, lighten his hair color a bit, gave him acting lessons, fed him better lines, get a better actress for Chun Li (had to throw that in there), and gave him a better costume, he could pull off a great Vega. In short, Taboo has the potential to be a great Vega, but they should have worked on him more. Plus, look on the bright side. This movie could have been as horrible as Dragonball Evolution and it wasn't. We lucked out ^.-
Pericardium on Aug 29, 2009
I like the BEP music, however, the only real talented one of them is Fergie. Almost every one of their songs has an overlay tune from an old school song that's no longer played on the radio, so as you can hear, they don't really come up with their own music, but instead, they boost a flow off of somebody else's shit that's no longer played. Will.I.Am is pretty cool for a producer I guess and Apl D Ap passes; but Taboo straight out sucks. Choosing him for Vega was big mistake. If anything, they should have cut his hair down and made him Fei Long? For this movie, they should have at least given Jason Statham a blonde wig and made him play the part. Vega is supposed to be tall, accented, with blonde hair and a beautiful face......that's why he wears the mask upon fighting. He's supposed to be vary vain about himself too. Taboo in real life is vain about his music, so I guess they got that part right at least. I don't know how people like Taboo get into the music business and make it big. ANYBODY can chop n' dice stuff up and make a record without talent these days. As for the movie itself. I loved the story line, but I was expecting WAY more out of M.Bison. The guy who played his character did an ok job, however, according to the game, I thought M. Bison was supposed to be Thai? And with extraordinary powers? The guy in the movie was a douche. I'm surprised they didn't add in a Sagat role played by Kobe. I give the movie 3/10.
HOMIE on Feb 15, 2010
taboo is not short. He is 6ft tall. But he doesn't look like vega though.
Mina on Mar 9, 2011
Also in the comic book, vega is 6ft1inch and 159 lbs. That is taboo weight. vega has blonde to brown long hair. Taboo doesn't. Vega has pointy face like taboo. TAboo doesn't look like vega though.
Mina on Mar 9, 2011
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