Johnny Rotten sued by Sex Pistols bandmates for music rights in biopic
- Publish Date
- Sunday, 18 July 2021, 12:57PM
John Lydon a.k.a. 'Johnny Rotten' is being sued by his surviving Sex Pistols bandmates, guitarist Steve Jones and drummer Paul Cook, over rights to use the band's music in an upcoming biopic miniseries.
The series, titled Pistol, is based on Jones' 2018 memoir Lonely Boy: Tales From A Sex Pistol.
A lawyer for Jones and Cook told a judge in London's High Court that a band agreement from 1988 permits Sex Pistols music to be used in other media on a "majority rules basis."
Jones and Cook have a "fractious and brittle" relationship with Lydon, according to their counsel, but they say their miniseries has support from longtime bassist Glen Matlock and the estate of late-bassist Sid Vicious.
Lydon's lawyer says the film's executive producer and director, Academy Award-winner Danny Boyle, never approached Lydon about permission for the film. He added that Jones and Cook have repeatedly portrayed the singer "in a hostile and unflattering light."
This spring, Lydon called the Pistol series "the most disrespectful s--t I've ever had to endure" and vowed to fight it in court to the "bitter end."
In 2019, Lydon also publicly objected to a proposed biopic based on the 2004 Mick O'Shea book, The Early Days of the Sex Pistols: Only Anarchists Are Pretty.
Take your Radio, Podcasts and Music with you