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Tuesday, May 31

Halo Film Score

This has been sitting in my drafts for ages waiting for me to turn in into to a story. Can't remind where I borrowed it from. Enjoy. 


Bungie composer Marty O'Donnell has created some of the most memorable video game scores around for the Halo franchise. After five different Halo games, however, Bungie has moved on and that means O'Donnell will most likely never score Halo again... unless filmmakers ask him to. 
The idea of a Halo movie has been in the works for some time now, but legal issues and other problems have prevented Master Chief from hitting the silver screen so far. Microsoft remains interested, so fans shouldn't give up hope. But if it does happen, who will create the music? O'Donnell sure wouldn't mind the opportunity.
Speaking with IndustryGamers recently, O'Donnell commented, "I would love to score the Halomovie. No doubt about it. I think that would be great."

Image courtesy of GameInformer
But he also remains skeptical about his chances to land the job. "I would be surprised," he continued. "I feel like, knowing Hollywood just a little bit, they would most likely say, 'We have to have a tried and true Hollywood composer' and 'These themes are appropriate for games but not appropriate for movies.' Or something like that. That's sort of what I'm expecting. I have a hard time believing that they wouldn't hint at some theme that I wrote at some point in the movie. But I would certainly answer the phone if somebody called - Spielberg or whoever it might be."
It's ironic that Hollywood would favor a "proven" composer, since scoring for video games in many ways presents a greater challenge than movies or television.
"I came from the linear media and I took some scores out of Chicago and did tons of commercials and had a whole other career. I think artistically and aesthetically scoring for games is harder," O'Donnell added. "It's technically harder. In my opinion, you have to have all the same chops that you have for linear media and then you have this other added technical and artistic vision to make it adaptive and interactive and all the rest. So I think it's actually harder, more complex, more interesting. I love music for games and I love what people have done with music for games and it just keeps getting better and better all the time.
"And - I might be wrong about this - but I think in the general public, in the populous, the respect for music for games has risen to a really nice, high level. I think Hollywood is sort of an insular place and their friends hire their friends and people that they're comfortable with. If they're spending $200 million dollars on some giant blockbuster film, you're going to get a big name person usually. The exception to that rule I think is when Brad Bird hired Michael Giacchino to do The Incredibles. Michael had done a lot of TV work and some game work. Brad, I think, is one of those spectacularly cool, creative 'unHollywood' guys."
Continuing the comparison of scoring a potential Halo movie to The Incredibles scenario, O'Donnell noted, "I've actually spoken to Michael and Brad about this and Brad said people were suspicious of, 'Why are you hiring this no name guy from the game industry to do music for The Incredibles?' He said, 'Because I love his music and he can do this.' And then Michael won the Academy Award for music last year. That's just a thrill for guys like me to see. You would hope the respect would somehow translate around into the rest, but the film composing community is really tiny. It's not very big, so I don't know who is willing to take risks on an unknown."

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