Composer Sean Callery Explains His Approach To Scoring Halo

It’s hard to imagine the story of Halo unfolding without Martin O’Donnell scoring Master Chief’s adventures. Regardless, the creators of the Paramount+ series decided to go in a different direction, with Sean Callery handling the show’s themes. Callery was no stranger to TV, having previously worked on 24, Homeland, and Jessica Jones over the last few years. But Halo already came with its own set of expectations regarding how the music should sound. And in a new featurette, Calley explains his approach to scoring the series.

Callery broke into TV scoring with help from X-Files composer Mark Snow so his career stretches back more than two decades. When the offer to score Halo eventually fell into his lap, he confessed that he hadn’t spent much time playing the original video games. However, he couldn’t help but marvel at the producers’ goals for the adaptation.

“They let me see the pilot and read the first couple of scripts,” said Callery. “And I was just so struck by the immersiveness and expansiveness of the story; and I realized that this is a separate canon thread from the main vain of the game history. But you still are in the Halo universe, and I was pretty riveted.”

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Needless to say, the task was daunting. “Every episode always had a very unique mood and flavor and storyline,” added Callery. “And I always found when I was looking at the episode for the first time with the producers, there was always some scene that was really big. And you’re like, ‘Oh god, what the hell are we gonna do there?’

The first piece of music that Callery began writing for the series was Master Chief’s new theme. This can be heard during Halo’s main titles. But in the video, Callery also discussed some of his favorite musical moments that we’ve heard so far. These include the scene in episode 6, where John and Makee both have visions of being on one of the ringworlds.

Have you been enjoying Callery’s score so far? Let us know in the comment section below!

Recommended Reading – Halo Mythos: A Guide to the Story of Halo

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