Former Sex Pistols members Steve Jones and Paul Cook have taken their issues with John Lydon to court in relation to an upcoming FX limited series about the legendary punk band.
According to the Associated Press (AP), Jones and Cook are suing Lydon for the right to use Sex Pistols music in Pistol, the Danny Boyle-helmed six-episode limited series based on Jones’ 2018 memoir Loney Boy: Tales from a Sex Pistol.
The AP reports, “Edmund Cullen, a lawyer for Jones and Cook, told a judge at the High Court in London on Thursday that the former bandmates have a ‘brittle and fractious’ relationship. Cullen argued that under the terms of a 1998 band agreement, decisions regarding licensing requests could be determined on a ‘majority rules basis.’ Lydon, however, contends that licenses to use the music can’t be granted without his consent.”
The AP added, “Lydon’s lawyer, Mark Cunningham, said in written arguments that Jones’s memoir depicted the singer ‘in a hostile and unflattering light,’ at one point describing Johnny Rotten as ‘the annoying little brat with the great bone structure who’s always asking for more.'”
Lydon has been very vocal about his disdain for the project saying in an April 2021 interview with The Sunday Times, “I think that’s the most disrespectful s— I’ve ever had to endure. I mean, they went to the point to hire an actor to play me but what’s the actor working on? Certainly not my character. It can’t go anywhere else [but court.]”
Lydon would add, “Sorry, you think you can do this, like walk all over me – it isn’t going to happen. Not without a huge, enormous f—ing 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.”
Pistol is the latest limited series from FX about iconic British bands. In December 2020, it was announced a two-season limited series about The Rolling Stones would be heading to the cable network. Written by High Fidelity author Nick Hornby, the series will focus on the band’s earlier years from their initial formation up to 1972 chronicling their impressive album release run that included Beggars Banquet, Let It Bleed, Sticky Fingers and Exile on Main Street.