Libel Victory for Man with the Golden Tune
LONDON (Reuters) – Composer Monty Norman left London’s High Court $43,000 richer Monday after a jury decided he had been libeled by a British newspaper which said he did not write the James Bond film theme tune.
Norman, 72, won the damages over a 1997 Sunday Times article headed “Theme tune wrangle has 007 shaken and stirred.” The award winning composer said the piece cast a slur over his entire career.
In its defense The Sunday Times argued that another composer, John Barry, 67, had written the piece.
However, Barry said he was called in to work on the tune because the Bond producers were not happy with Norman’s efforts.
He said he was paid 250 pounds as a flat fee, and would be given future involvement in Bond movies if his first film, “Dr. No,” was a success. Norman would receive credit for the tune.
Norman said afterwards: “The Sunday Times always said that they were only interested in the truth. Now we have got the truth and I am delighted.”
The Sunday Times said: “This was always going to be a difficult case for a jury given the complexities of the expert musical evidence.”