Agent Provocateur, Vivienne Westwood

Agent Provocateur, Vivienne Westwood

A Family Affair: Joe Corré Takes a Hard Look at Growing Up Punk in New Film

Joe Corré, son of Vivienne Westwood and Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren, talked to us about his new documentary film “Wake Up Punk.”


Joe Corré, son of Vivienne Westwood and Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren, talked to us about his new documentary film “Wake Up Punk.”

“My parents are not iconic,” argues Corré. “In the Seventies, they were called everything from scum and outsiders to geniuses. Now my mother is considered a national treasure.”

“Malcolm would be turning in his grave if he saw ‘Anarchy in the U.K.’ printed on a f–king credit card,” says Corré in the upcoming documentary film he made called “Wake Up Punk.”

Westwood is right there with her son through the film, at the bonfire on the ship and railing against fracking, a mechanical process that releases natural gas, petroleum and brine from deep in the ground — a cause that continues to be important to mother and son alike.

There’s a lot going on, and the best bits by far are the ones with mother and son just having a chat. Westwood, with her creamy skin and flash of red hair, sets the screen alight with her matter-of-fact, frank admissions.

The only family holiday the four of them (Joe has an older half-brother Ben Westwood from Vivienne’s marriage to Derek Westwood) took was a hitchhiking trip to Anglesey, an island in Wales, where they ended up sleeping in a barn. The brothers plucked coins out of fountains and filled their pockets until they were soaking wet.

“There are bits of the film that make me cringe, but they are there because I think they answer important questions. At the time, when I decided to burn all of that stuff, it was an obvious provocation to people and I expected to be attacked for doing it. People accused me of trying to get back at my father over our relationship.

In the early Nineties he cofounded the luxury lingerie brand Agent Provocateur with his former wife Serena Rees. In 2007, the couple sold a majority stake to private equity firm 3i for about 60 million ponds.

“I think it is one of the things that I am enjoying the most, actually. But unfortunately it always gets shoved to the back of the queue because there are so many other projects that I am getting involved in. I always wanted it to be small because Agent Provocateur had hundreds of shops and was this great big machine that eventually becomes completely anti-creative and corporate,” says Corré, a handsome, imposing yet unfailingly polite and warm man who’s dressed in tailored Jago clothing and chunky rings made by his partner, Claire English.

The label has had a shop on Charing Cross Road for five years, having moved there from Shoreditch where the rents became too high.

Read more: WWD

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