Simon Cowell Reveals One Direction Were 'Shocked' By Zayn's Decision To Leave The Band 5 years ago

Simon Cowell Reveals One Direction Were 'Shocked' By Zayn's Decision To Leave The Band

Simon Cowell has opened up about the circumstances surrounding Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction.

The X Factor boss spoke candidly about the shock move during an appearance on The Late Late Show with James Corden, revealing that he was in Miami when he heard the news.

"I was just about to jump off a cliff. I kind of knew this was coming if I'm being honest with you. We had a few conversations - he wasn't happy and I was trying to say to him, 'Look, I think you should stay around a bit longer,' and then something in him just said, 'No I've had enough,' and then once the decision was made I dealt with it."

He went to say that while he was aware of Malik's unhappiness, the band were "shocked" by his decision to quit while on tour.

"Obviously I made sure the guys were OK, because they were shocked as well. I'd seen him in person as well, but once someone has made their mind up, they're going to go. But also at the same time, I don't want to push him too much because he's 22 and I could see that he was a bit stressed and he wanted some time off and I had to respect his decision."