Sex Pistols frontman John Lydon is being sued by bandmates Steve Jones and Paul Cook after refusing to license the group’s music for inclusion in the forthcoming biopic series ‘Pistols’, being made by Oscar-winning Trainspotting / Slumdog Millionaire / 28 Days Later film-maker Danny Boyle.
Guitarist Jones, whose memoir, Lonely Boy: Tales From a Sex Pistol, the new series is based upon, and drummer Cook, now playing with The Professionals, are challenging Lydon’s veto in the High Court.
The duo’s lawyer, Edward Cullen, told the court yesterday (July 15), that the Sex Pistols have an agreement that licensing requests could be determined on a “majority rules basis.” In addition to Cook and Jones, bassist Glen Matlock and the estate of late bassist Sid Vicious are both happy to see the band’s music used in the show. But Lydon, who described ‘Pistols’ as “disrespectful shit” back in April, is arguing that Boyle’s team need his consent in order to use Pistols’ songs in the series.
Lydon’s lawyer, Mark Cunningham QC, said that the singer felt that Jones’ memoir “depicts him in a hostile and unflattering light”, referring to a passage in the book that describes Lydon as an “annoying little brat with the great bone structure who’s always asking for more.”
Interviewed in The Sunday Times in April, Lydon sought to address Boyle directly saying, “Sorry, you think you can do this, like walk all over me – it isn’t going to happen. Not without a huge, enormous fucking fight. I’m Johnny, you know, and when you interfere with my business you’re going to get the bitter end of my business as a result. It’s a disgrace.”
The court case is expected to conclude next week.
You can see ‘Pistols’ actors Anson Boon (left) and Jacob Slater as Johnny Rotten and Paul Cook in the image below.