Halo Composers

The Halo composers have ‘amicably resolved’ their legal dispute with Microsoft

Peace has been achieved.
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The composers of the iconic Halo soundtrack have now “amicably resolved” their long-term legal dispute with Microsoft. Marty O’Donnell and Michael Salvatori sued the publisher over unpaid royalties for using the music they made for the Bungie-developed Halo games.

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O’Donnell announced in a Tweet that, “Microsoft and O’Donnell/Salvatori Inc are pleased to have amicably resolved their differences.” Along with this announcement, O’Donnell shared a behind-the-scenes video of himself and guitarist Steve Vai working on the score for Halo: Combat Evolved. The pair were preparing for a pre-trial on May 9, but it seems like that will no longer be necessary.


A history of Gregorian chants

The dispute between the legendary composers was ongoing for a while. Lawyers that represented the musicians initially filed a lawsuit in June 2020. At one point, the pair even conferred with their lawyers about how feasible it would be to stop the release of the Halo TV show with an injunction.

Speaking to Eurogamer, O’Donnel and Salvatori revealed they had been in talks with Microsoft about this for over a decade without a clear resolution. The pair received regular royalties for many years. However, they weren’t informed about how much of their music was being sold. Each new Halo release that used their music in some form only served to complicate this even more. The Halo composers were also frustrated by the lack of credit as the original composers of the Halo score in last year’s Halo Infinite.

The duo filled the lawsuit in order to work out the exact amount of money owed by Microsoft, and then settle on a precise number. With the announcement of the Halo composers and Microsoft settling the dispute today, it seems like the two sides came to an agreeable conclusion. Hopefully, this means we can look forward to more behind-the-scenes videos of the creation of such a legendary soundtrack.


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Chirag Pattni
Chirag is a writer at PC Invasion. He's been passionate about Halo, Metal Gear Solid, and The Legend of Zelda for as long as he can remember, and he enjoys all things anime.