Microsoft Sued by Original Halo Composers: The soundtrack, particularly its main theme, is easily recognizable. The theme is an operatic, choir-like chant that has feature in every mainline game. It has covered by everything from marching bands and echoing staircases.
Bungie developed Halo and released it as a launch title on the Xbox One in 2001. The title’s success cemented it as an icon. As shown by the many games trying to capitalize on Halo‘s popularity. It also became Xbox’s flagship series.
Halo is so synonymous with Xbox that Microsoft even gave Cortana. Its virtual assistant, a name that pays homage to the AI companion in the games.
The soundtrack is also synonymous with Halo. Now, the original composers are suing Microsoft. Claiming that they owe them royalties payments for the entire 20-year history of the game.
The lawsuit file by Mike Salvatori and Marty O’Donnell in June 2020. There have no agreements. There is a chance this case will go to court if there aren’t any agreements in the next week.
Although Halo‘s launch on the original Xbox might the most significant moment in the soundtrack’s history. It was not the first time that the music was heard.
Microsoft Sued by Original Halo Composers
Halo originally was a Bungie game developed for the Apple Mac computer. It was first shown in an early stage at the 1999 MacWorld. The show featured a concept trailer. You can hear the iconic Halo music playing in the background.
Sony recently purchased Bungie. The Apple project was abandoned in 2000, and Halo was reworked to become the Xbox franchise.
Salvatore and O’Donnell claim that Bungie’s 1999 work was a license agreement so that composers could claim royalties if the music use in future projects.
Microsoft refutes this claim. It claims that the music was work-for-hire and that Microsoft bought the rights to the soundtrack.
Over the past 20-years, the Halo soundtrack has used in many projects. Including promotional material and spinoffs. Paramount has released a trailer for the upcoming Halo TV series.
It even includes a sting taken from the game’s soundtrack. This suggests that certain iconic tracks might included in some episodes. Microsoft is unlikely to entertain the possibility of paying back all royalties for these use and any future use of the music that it has freely used up until now.
Microsoft could decide to sue the lawsuit, even though there have no agreements in place for almost a year.