Hit boyband, One Direction, faces uncertainty and change as founding member Zayn Malik breaks with the group.
Malik, 22, announced on Wednesday the 25th that he would not be returning for the band’s 2015 tour. He cited personal reasons for the departure, and expressed remorse for the pain he may have caused fans and friends alike.
“I feel like I’ve let the fans down, but I can’t do this anymore,” Malik told reporters from The Sun. “It’s not that I’ve turned my back on them or anything, it’s just that I just can’t do that anymore, because it’s not the real me.”
Malik claims he’s been struggling with the decision for a long time now, and that it was at long last the time for change. “You know, I did try to do something that I wasn’t happy doing for a while, for the sake of maybe other people. I’m only upset [because] I feel like I may have let them down.”
Despite his break from the band, Malik looks to continue his craft on his own. Malik was sighted at a West London recording studio as recently as the 27th, and even told The Sun that he is already hard at work on new content with Naughty Boy productions.
Fan reaction to Malik’s solo shift have been wild and varied. Many have expressed anger at the move, as it appeared in direct contradiction with reasons given for his departure. “I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight,” Malik said.
Simon Cowell, popular TV personality and founder of the group, said the following via the band’s Facebook page. “I would like to say thank you to Zayn for everything he has done for One Direction. Since I first met Zayn in 2010, I have grown very, very fond- and immensely proud- of him. I have seen him grow in confidence and I am truly sorry to see him leave. As for One Direction, fans can rest assured that Niall, Liam, Harry and Louis are hugely excited about the future of the band.”
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