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Destiny, Halo Composer Wins Lawsuit Against Bungie

by William Schwartz

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One of Bungie’s co-founders, and composer of Halo’s and Destiny’s themes, has won his case against his former employers. Martin O’Donnell took to Twitter in April of last year to reveal that Bungie terminated his contract “without cause.” He proceeded to sue Bungie over various matters, including unpaid vacation and paid time off. Under a final ruling issued today, Bungie are due to restore O’Donnell’s stock holdings in Bungie, pay him $95,000 in unpaid wages, and pay him a further $142,500 in profit sharing.

Perhaps more interestingly, the court order also shed light on the reported rupture between O’Donnell and Bungie. O’Donnell had recorded an original suite of music with former Beatle Paul McCartney, with the intention of using it throughout Destiny. Unfortunately for the duo, Activision replaced their music, and, despite Bungie’s protests, Activision’s music took precedence.

This was the catalyst of the rift between O’Donnell and his employers, with the former accused of threatening to keep the trailer from ever coming to light as well as becoming disruptive at news briefings. Bungie felt that O’Donnell was intent on publishing his music for Destiny irrespective of the wishes of his superiors. O’Donnell said that he was simply fighting back against Activision’s corrosive presence in the studio. The full ruling is available here.

Destiny released September 9th of last year, and it’s latest outing, The Taken King, is set to release on September 15th, followed three days later by The King’s Fall Raid.

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