Pistol and Punk: Danny Boyle in Conversation

Sun 5 Jun 2022, 7.30pm
Part of Jubilee
Queen Elizabeth Hall
Talks & debates
From £15
past event
past event

Director Danny Boyle discusses Pistol, his new series, and the punk revolution with Julien Temple, Maisie Williams, John Cooper Clarke, Celeste Bell and chair Andrew O’Hagan.

Produced by FX Productions and streaming from 31 May on Disney+ in the UK, Pistol is a six-episode limited series about a rock and roll revolution.

The furious, raging storm at the center of this revolution are the Sex Pistols – and at the centre of this series is Sex Pistols’ founding member and guitarist, Steve Jones.

Jones’ hilarious, emotional and at times heartbreaking journey guides us through a kaleidoscopic telling of three of the most epic, chaotic and mucus-spattered years in the history of music.

Based on Jones’ memoir Lonely Boy: Tales from a Sex Pistol, this is the story of a band of spotty, noisy, working-class kids with no future, who shook the boring, corrupt establishment to its core, threatened to bring down the government and changed music and culture forever.

Following on from the complete series screening of Pistol, this conversation explores the politics and the personalities which inspired a defining shift in our history.

1977 marked Her Majesty The Queen’s Silver Jubilee and also saw the punk explosion, fuelled by a rejection of the governing political and populist ideologies of the time.

Hear Danny Boyle, filmmaker Julien Temple and an expert panel including actress Maisie Williams and chair Andrew O’Hagan reflect on the wider punk movement and how its legacy impacts on our cultural life 45 years later.

Danny Boyle is the director of Slumdog Millionaire, 28 Days Later and Trainspotting. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including an Oscar for Best Director. In 2012 he directed the opening ceremony of the London Olympic Games.

Julien Temple is a director and documentary film-maker who began his career with films featuring The Sex Pistols. His films include The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle, Punk Can Take It, Absolute Beginners and The Filth and the Fury.

Celeste Bell is a writer, film-maker and the daughter of Marianne Elliott, aka Poly Styrene. She is the co-author of the book Dayglo and co-director of the film Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché.

Maisie Williams is an English actress. She played Arya Stark in Game of Thrones, for which she received numerous awards, and plays Jordan in Danny Boyle’s Pistol.

John Cooper Clarke shot to prominence in the 1970s as the original ‘people’s poet’. He has performed with acts including Joy Division, Sex Pistols and The Clash, as well as carving his own niche as a stand-up poet. Cooper Clarke's 2020 autobiography is named after his most famous poem, ‘I Wanna Be Yours’.

Three-time Booker-nominated Andrew O’Hagan has won the Glenfiddich Writer of the Year Award, the Lost Angeles Times Book Award and the EM Forster Prize. He is Editor-at-Large of the London Review of Books, and is a contributor to Esquire, the New York Review of Books and the New Yorker.

This event is one of the highlights of a day celebrating the release of Pistol and exploring the legacies of punk, which also includes live performances.

Need to know

Age recommendation

For ages 16+

This event is Speech-to-Text transcribed (STT).

You can join our free Access Scheme through your online Southbank Centre account or via email.
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Contains language some audiences may find offensive and adult subject matter

Dates & times

Sun 5 Jun 2022, 7.30pm


  • Standard entryFrom £15*
  • Concessions25%**

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