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Zayn Malik says he left One Direction to get “ahead of the curve”

By | Published on Thursday 13 July 2023

Zayn Malik

Zayn Malik has spoken about his reasons for leaving One Direction in March 2015, saying that the excuse of “stress” given at the time was not true. In fact, he now says, he had seen that the group’s days were numbered and simply wanted to get “ahead of the curve” in terms of starting a solo career. The rest of the band confirmed they were going “on hiatus” later that year.

Speaking to Alex Cooper on her Call Her Daddy podcast, he said: “I don’t want to go into too much detail, but … there was a lot of politics, certain people didn’t want to sign contracts and I knew something was happening. So, I was like, I’ll just get ahead of the curve and get out of here, I think this is done”.

“I just [saw] it [coming] and I completely selfishly wanted to be the first person to go and make my own record”, he went on. “I jumped the gun and when it comes to my music I’m serious and competitive and I wanted to be the first to do that”.

He added that the group’s interpersonal relationships had become strained by early 2015, saying: “There were obviously underlying issues within our friendships too – we’d got sick of each other, if I’m being completely honest. We had been together nearly every day for five years. We were close and got to do crazy things together that no one else in the world will ever understand. I look back [at it] now in a much fonder light than when I first left. It just ran its course”.

Malik’s comments come days after fellow 1D-er Liam Payne publicly apologised for comments he previously made about his former bandmate.

Payne appeared on Logan Paul’s Impaulsive podcast last year and made a number of controversial comments, which included digs at Malik. In a video posted to YouTube this week, he revealed that he had gone into rehab this year, in part as a result of the backlash to those comments.

“My own frustrations with my own career and where I kind of landed [meant] I took shots at everybody else, which is wrong”, he said. “Obviously, I want to apologise for that, in the first instance, because that’s definitely not me”.

“The rest of the boys really stuck by me when I needed them most, they kinda came to the rescue”, he went on. “Even Zayn, as well, which is why I did send him a little thank you online”.

So yeah, none of this suggests a reunion is happening any time soon. Also, let’s not forget, Niall Horan claimed last month that, despite all of One Direction’s former members being in regular contact, they’ve never actually discussed getting back together.