Martin O’Donnell leaves Bungie: dismissal reasons, lawsuit outcome revealed
Following his surprise dismissal from Bungie last year, Halo and Destiny sound director and lead composer filed a lawsuit claiming breach-of-contract. As detailed here, it was announced today that O’Donnell won the lawsuit. O’Donnell has regained his stock in his community and will receive payouts under their profit-sharing program, in addition to 95,000 USD in unpaid wages.
The lawsuit filings also revealed the reasons behind O’Donnell’s firing from the company. At the heart of the matter was the Music of the Spheres project that O’Donnell co-created with Michael Salvatori and Paul McCartney. Publisher Activision were disinterested in releasing the eight-movement symphonic suite as a stand-alone work and replaced music from this project with their own in-house tracks. Bungie ultimately fired O’Donnell following a series of private and public incidents related to this matter, as detailed here.
O’Donnell recently co-founded the game design company Highwire Games and is currently working on his first project there. While the Destiny Original Soundtrack was released digitally, the Music of the Spheres project still has yet to be released and likely won’t be. One term of the settlement is that O’Donnell is not allowed to publish music from Destiny without permission from the copyright owners.
Posted on September 5, 2015 by Chris Greening. Last modified on September 5, 2015.