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First look at Danny Boyle’s Sex Pistols series as premiere date confirmed

'Pistol' will stream on Disney+ in the UK from May 31

By Joe Goggins

Still from 'Pistol', 2022
Anson Boon plays Johnny Rotten in the six-part series. (Photo: FX)

Danny Boyle’s hotly anticipated Sex Pistols TV series has a premiere date, with U.S. network FX sharing first look photos of the show.

‘Pistol’, a six-part series based on the 2017 memoir ‘Lonely Boy: Tales of a Sex Pistol’ by guitarist Steve Jones, will be available in its entirety on May 31, when it will stream exclusively on Disney+ in the UK. FX have claimed that the show will take audiences “through a kaleidoscopic telling of three of the most epic, chaotic and mucus-spattered years in the history of music,” through the eyes of “spotty, noisy, working-class kids with ‘no future’” who shook the music world to its core.

Toby Wallace, who won plaudits for his turn in the 2019 indie drama ‘Babyteeth’, will take on the role of Jones, while Anson Boon, who appeared in Sam Mendes’ ‘1917’, is in the lead role of Johnny Rotten. Elsewhere, Louis Partridge plays iconic bassist Sid Vicious, Jacob Slater will portray drummer Paul Cook, and Glen Matlock assumes the part of original bass player Glen Matlock.

The broader cast list, meanwhile, gives us a sense of which key moments in the Pistols’ late-seventies heyday will be covered by the six episodes. Emma Appleton will appear as Nancy Spungen, with other punk figures to be portrayed including Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren (Thomas Brodie-Sangster), The Pretenders’ Chrissie Hynde (Sydney Chandler), fashion legend Vivienne Westwood (Talulah Riley), and iconic model Jordan (Maisie Williams).

The series is directed and executive produced by Oscar winner Boyle, with Craig Pearce having created and written the series. The show’s production has driven a wedge between Rotten, real name John Lydon, and his former bandmates, with the singer’s legal attempts to block the show from using the Sex Pistols’ music ultimately failing; in response, he said that the show would “water down” the band’s legacy.

Boon, meanwhile, sat down with Rolling Stone UK to discuss ‘Pistol’, in an interview that can be found in issue four of the magazine’s print edition; you can pre-order it here. It will subsequently be available online.