From throwing insults to talking about a reunion, here's everything One Direction members have said since their hiatus

Frazer Harrison/AMA2013/FilmMagic/GettyOne Direction has been on hiatus for a few years.
  • One Direction shot to stardom in 2010 after competing on “The X Factor.”
  • They sold millions of albums worldwide and sold out major arenas.
  • After member Zayn Malik left in 2015, the band continued as a four-piece but later that year they announced they’d be going on a hiatus.
  • Since the hiatus, all five members have produced solo projects and have done interviews in which they have commented on the group and their former bandmates.
  • Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.

One Direction was one of the most popular bands of the 2010s, producing multiple top-10 hits and five full-length albums. They sold out tours in stadiums and arenas around the globe.

The band was formed in 2010 on the UK version of “The X Factor” and it is comprised of five guys who auditioned as solo artists. The members include Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, Harry Styles, and Louis Tomlinson.

After years of reaching milestones and breaking records, the band started to slow down. In early 2015, it was announced on Facebook that Zayn Malik would be leaving the band. The four remaining members released a final album and announced an extended hiatus in August 2015.

Since the announcement of the hiatus, members have gone on to pursue solo interests and have commented on potential reunions as well as their current relationships with their bandmates.

Here’s everything members of One Direction have said about the band and each other since announcing their hiatus.

In his first interview after leaving the band, Zayn Malik called One Direction’s music “generic as f—.”

Willy Sanjuan/Invision/APZayn Malik said he wasn’t 100% behind the band’s music.

In his first solo interview since leaving the band, Zayn Malik told Fader magazine that One Direction’s music was “generic as f—” and that it didn’t fit his style.

“Whenever I would suggest something, it was like it didn’t fit us. There was just a general conception that the management already had of what they want for the band and I just wasn’t convinced with what we were selling,” he told the publication.

He said he wasn’t 100% behind the band’s music and that the group was recording what they were told would sell.

In 2015, Malik said he wouldn’t listen to One Direction’s music.

Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesHe spent years creating music for 1D.

After leaving One Direction, Malik went on the record to say he isn’t a fan of the band’s music.

He told Rolling Stone, “That’s not music I would listen to …Would you listen to One Direction at a party with your girl? I wouldn’t. To me, that’s not an insult, that’s me as a 22-year-old man.”

“As much as I was in that band, and I loved everything that we did, that’s not music that I would listen to. I want to make music that I think is cool s—. I don’t think that’s too much to ask for,” he added.

In 2015, Malik seemed to suggest One Direction’s music wasn’t “real.”

Kevork Djansezian/Getty ImagesFans weren’t pleased to hear this.

In 2015, Malik teased the release of new music on Twitter. He shared the announcement along with “#RealMusic.” Many fans interpreted this as a jab at One Direction’s discography, feeling as though Malik meant to imply the music he had previously made with One Direction was fake or not quite up to his standards.

In 2016, Malik said he never wanted to be in One Direction.

In 2016, in his first solo, on-camera interview with radio station Beats 1, Malik said he never wanted to be in One Direction.

“I think I always wanted to go, from like the first year, really,” he told the interviewer. “I never really wanted to be there, like in the band.”

“I realised the direction we were going in – mind the pun – with the music, I instantly realised it wasn’t for me because I realised I couldn’t put any input in,” he added.

In 2017, Malik said he and Harry Styles didn’t really talk when they were in the band together. He also said he didn’t really talk to any of his bandmates anymore.

Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic/GettyMany fans thought the members of the group had been friends.

Malik told Us Weekly he and Styles were not close while they were in the band together. He said he “never really spoke to Harry” and that he had never been under the impression they would keep in touch after Malik left the band.

That same year, he told Billboard that he doesn’t really talk to anyone in the band anymore.

“Our relationships have definitely changed since we were in a band together, but I think that’s just life,” Malik told the publication. “Everybody grows up – two of the guys have got kids now. But no, I don’t talk to any of them, really.”

In 2018, Malik has said he didn’t make a single friend during his time in One Direction.

APThis was hard for many fans to hear.

In an interview with GQ, Malik said he “didn’t make any friends from the band.” He explained, “It’s not something that I’m afraid to say. I definitely have issues trusting people.

This came as a surprise to fans because in the Facebook post announcing his departure, Malik wrote that he had “four friends for life.”

That same year, Malik told GQ he felt his vision was not aligned with the band’s.

In a 2018 cover story, Malik explained he felt underrepresented in terms of the music One Direction was producing. He told GQ, “My vision didn’t necessarily always go with what was going on within the band.”

In contrast to the pop music of One Direction was known for producing, Malik released an R&B album in 2016.

Malik has also said, toward the end, he felt he wasn’t able to enjoy the experience of being in the band.

Evan Agostini/Invision/APHe referred to One Direction as a ‘machine.’

Speaking with Vogue UK in 2018, Malik referred to One Direction as a “machine.”

He discussed the band’s sudden rise to fame and rigorous touring schedule saying, “I think back to the performances towards the end when we were in stadiums – I wasn’t really ever able to enjoy the experience. The machine had gone too fast.”

Harry Styles responded to some of Malik’s comments in 2017.

Mike Marsland/WireImage/GettyHarry Styles said it’s a ‘shame’ Zayn Malik didn’t think One Direction’s music was cool.

The youngest member of One Direction, Harry Styles, has since released a critically acclaimed album, gone on a world tour, and co-chaired the 2019 Met Gala.

Since the band’s split, he has been relatively quiet about his relationships with the other members of One Direction, but he has mentioned his distant relationship with one member in particular, Malik.

In a 2017 profile for Rolling Stone, Styles responded to Malik saying One Direction’s music wasn’t “cool.”

“I think it’s a shame he felt that way … but I never wish anything but luck to anyone doing what they love. If you’re not enjoying something and need to do something else, you absolutely should do that. I’m glad he’s doing what he likes, and good luck to him,” said Styles.

Styles has also explained why he felt the band’s hiatus was best for their long-term success.

Vianney Le Caer/Invision/APHe said he loves One Direction.

In that same 2017 interview, when asked why the band agreed to take a hiatus,Styles told Rolling Stone he “didn’t want to exhaust [the band’s] fan base” and spoke for the other members saying, “We all thought too much of the group to let that happen.”

Styles went on to entertain ideas of a future reunion, saying, “I love the band and would never rule out anything in the future. The band changed my life, gave me everything.”

In 2017, Styles said a 1D reunion could eventually come about if everyone was in the right mindset.

Jamie McCarthy/Getty ImagesHarry Styles said he isn’t opposed to a reunion.

Styles told Another Man magazine that a One Direction reunion would never be ruled out. He thinks it is good for the members to be “exploring different things,” but that if a reunion were to happen when everyone felt comfortable, it would be “amazing.”

Read More: 12 things you probably didn’t know about Harry Styles

In 2017, Louis Tomlinson said he was feeling more confident than ever just before the band’s hiatus.

Vivien Killilea/GettyImagesLouis Tomlinson said he was becoming more confident just before the band split.

During their time on “The X Factor,” Louis Tomlinson had minimal screen time. He didn’t sing any solo parts on the show and was never the band’s frontman. Over the years, he began to perform more solos on the band’s albums and during live tours.

In 2017, he told The Guardian,“In the last year of One Direction, I was probably the most confident I ever was. And then it was: ‘OK, hiatus!'”

That same year, Tomlinson said he thought he would have a harder time than his bandmates trying to work with major names in the music industry.

C Flanigan/FilmMagic/GettyLouis Tomlinson has collaborated with a few stars.

When beginning his own solo career, Tomlinson expressed uncertainty in his ability to team up with any superstar collaborators.

In 2017, he told The Guardian, “I couldn’t say to you now that I could definitely get a superstar writer in a session with me,” later adding, “Harry [Styles] won’t struggle with any of that.”

Tomlinson has already released music with Bebe Rexha and Steve Aoki and his bandmates have also had created hit songs with famed artists.

Styles has collaborated with Stevie Nicks, Ariana Grande, and Kacey Musgraves; Malik has collaborated with artists like Taylor Swift and Sia; Horan has worked with Julia Michaels and Maren Morris; and Payne has worked with stars like Rita Ora and Zedd.

On the nine-year anniversary of the band being formed, Tomlinson sent his love to his bandmates.

C Flanigan/FilmMagicLouis Tomlinson is working on his music career.

“So many incredible memories. Days like today are days for reflection, so proud looking back! Thank you for ALWAYS having our backs! Big love to the lads! #9YearsOfOneDirection,” the musician tweeted on July 23, 2019 – the ninth anniversary of the band being formed.

In 2019, Louis Tomlinson said he thinks a 1D reunion is “inevitable.”

Bryan Steffy/GettyImagesLouis Tomlinson said he doesn’t know when it will happen.

In a 2019 interview with ODE Entertainment, Louis Tomlinson said he feels a One Direction reunion is “inevitable” but he doesn’t know when exactly it will happen.

Earlier this year, Tomlinson spoke about his and Malik’s strained friendship.

Steve Granitz/WireImage/GettyLouis Tomlinson and Zayn Malik had seemed close when they were in the band together.

In December 2016, Tomlinson’s’ mum Johannah Deakin died of leukemia. He was previously slated to perform on “The X Factor” just days after her death so he stuck to his commitment and performed his first solo song in her honour.

He said all of his former bandmates except for Malik came to see him perform. Tomlinson later spoke about the incident on the “The Dan Wootton Interview” podcast in 2019.

“… All the boys had agreed to come to that performance and he didn’t show so that really bugged me … It was just seeing everyone there – Harry, Niall, and Liam – that was what I needed that night, that support,” he said. “So on the other end of the spectrum it kind of really showed.”

In 2017, Liam Payne said he isn’t a fan of Harry’s song, “Sign of the Times.”

Frazer Harrison/AMA2013/FilmMagic/GettyLiam Payne said it’s not really his style of music.

In a video for Music Choice, Liam Payne was asked about some of his bandmates’ solo music.

He said Styles’ single “Sign of the Times”‘ is not “[his] sort of music” and isn’t something he’d listen to but he respects Harry’s taste and thinks he “did a great job of doing what he wanted to do.”

“He’d say the same thing about me,” Payne said of Styles. Payne creates hip-hop-style music whereas Style’s solo tracks have classic-rock vibes.

Payne said Horan’s solo single “This Town” was “great.”

That same year, during a speech, Payne made a joke about Malik’s departure from the band.

Fred Duval/GettyLiam Payne’s joke was about Zayn Malik leaving One Direction.

While presenting friend James Corden with the Man Of The Year award at Glamour’s Women Of The Year ceremony in 2017, Payne told a story about the band Corden was in when he was younger.

Corden’s band apparently had a slogan, which Payne followed up with“[One Direction] never had a slogan, but if we had, Zayn might have stayed.”

In 2019, Payne told a fan on Twitter to stop asking him about the hiatus.

Keith Mayhew/SOPA Images/LightRocket via GettyThe fan had sent him a tweet.

Payne, who has had success with solo songs like “Strip That Down,” and “Get Low,” recently responded to a fan on Twitter when they asked him about a reunion.

The fan reportedly shared two screenshots of conflicting reports of a reunion tour, asking Payne if he could make up his mind.

Payne responded by writing, “Can people stop passing blame to me about this I get asked this ridiculous question 500x a day (exaggeration)… so I just say whatever guess I have at the time… but still this band has 3 other members you want the answer ask them.”

In 2019, Payne spoke about how “dumb luck” played a role in 1D’s success and how the fame could get toxic.

Tristan Fewings/GettyLiam Payne said sometimes being in the band was toxic.

“It literally was the perfect storm,” Payne told Men’s Health magazine in 2019, speaking of One Direction’s success. He said so many scenarios had to fall into place for the band to be as successful as it was and a lot of it came down to “dumb luck.”

He also spoke about how the group’s fame took a toll on him and impacted his mental health.

“When you’re doing hundreds and hundreds of [concerts] and it’s the same 22 songs at the same time every single day, even if you’re not happy, you’ve got to go out there,” he told the publication. “It’s almost like putting the Disney costume on before you step up on stage and underneath the Disney costume I was pissed (drunk) quite a lot of the time because there was no other way to get your head around what was going on.”

He said it was fun but parts of being famous and being on tour “just got a little bit toxic.”

In 2017, Niall Horan shared that he doesn’t regularly keep in touch with Malik but he has kept in touch with some of his other bandmates.

Frazer Harrison/AMA2013/FilmMagic/GettyNiall Horan said it’s hard to get in touch with Zayn Malik.

Niall Horan told The Sun that Malik is the “hardest man to get in touch with” due to the fact that he is constantly changing his phone number.

He did say that he met Payne’s son, Bear, and brought him gifts. He also mentioned that he’d been to see one of Styles’ solo gigs and got a drink with him.

He also mentioned a possible band reunion in that interview, saying, “It’s only been like two years or whatever so I’m not worried about it. I’m not rushing it and I’m not worried that it won’t happen.”

That same year, Horan said he sometimes feels as though he is still in One Direction

CraSH/imageSPACE / MediaPunch/APNiall Horan is now a solo artist.

In an interview with Billboard, Horan said he sometimes feels like something is missing when touring solo as opposed to in a band.

He said, “You’re sitting in an airport lounge, they call you for a plane, and you don’t stand up initially because you’re waiting on ­everyone else, you know? ‘Oh, Louis’ll be back from the toilet in a minute.'”

In that same interview, Horan said he has nothing but respect for his former bandmates.

Fred Duval/GettyNiall Horan didn’t directly respond to any of Zayn Malik’s comments.

Speaking to Billboard, Horan said he sees Tomlinson and Tomlinson’s son, Freddie, often. He said they live near each other in Los Angeles and see each other “all the time.”

He also spoke about his plans to hang out with Styles and Payne and shrugged off questions about Malik’s shady comments: “I know what Zayn’s like – outspoken, and fair play to him.”

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