UPDATE (4/4): The Sex Pistols cook up an explosive concoction of incredibly marketable anarchy for a disaffected generation in the new short trailer for Pistol. The clip doesn’t offer too much in the way of plot points, but sets a distinct tone as the budding punk outfit and their peers rail against Britain’s monarchy and dream of causing mayhem in London. The show is set to premiere May 31 on Hulu.
Danny Boyle’s Pistol, the FX limited series about the Sex Pistols, will make its streaming premiere in full on May 31, exclusively on Hulu in the U.S. Disney+ will host all six episodes in other territories.
Centered around Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones, Pistol pulls from the founding member’s 2017 memoir Lonely Boy: Tales from a Sex Pistol in telling the story of a rock & roll revolution that took place over a chaotic three-year span.
Toby Wallace stars in the limited series as Jones, rounding out the band with Anson Boon as Johnny Rotten, Louis Partridge as Sid Vicious, Jacob Slater as Paul Cook, and Christian Lees as Glen Matlock. They all appear alongside The Queen’s Gambit’s Thomas Brodie-Sangster as the band’s manager Malcolm McLaren, Game of Thrones vet Maisie Williams as punk icon Jordan, and Westworld’s Talulah Riley as punk designer Vivienne Westwood. Iris Law will make her screen debut in the series as Soo Catwoman.
“This is the moment that British society and culture changed forever,” Boyle previously shared in a statement. “It is the detonation point for British street culture…where ordinary young people had the stage and vented their fury and their fashion…and everyone had to watch and listen…and everyone feared them or followed them. The Sex Pistols. At its center was a young charming illiterate kleptomaniac — a hero for the times — Steve Jones, who became in his own words, the 94th greatest guitarist of all time. This is how he got there.”
First announced last March, Pistol received heavy pushback from Johnny Rotten, born John Lydon, who referred to the series as “the most disrespectful shit I’ve ever had to endure” and threatened legal action against what he considered to be an unauthorized series in an interview with The Sunday Times.
By July, Lydon was hit with a lawsuit himself. On the basis of an authorized licensing agreement established in 1998, Jones and Cook went after the former frontman after he refused to grant FX permission to use the band’s music in Pistol, despite the “majority rules basis” the agreement lays out.
“John Lydon sold his rights to control the use of these songs in the Nineties in return for money,” Jones and Cook said in a statement shared via Blabbermouth. “The majority rule agreement existed as a result — so no outside party could dictate the use of the band’s music. And to have a mechanism in place if one member was unfairly blocking the decision-making process — which is what happened in this instance.”
According to the two members, Lydon was offered meetings with Boyle and showrunner Craig Pearce but declined to be involved.