One Direction taking a break?

One Direction's (from far left) Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Niall Horan, and Louis Tomlinson performing in New York City recently.
One Direction's (from far left) Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Niall Horan, and Louis Tomlinson performing in New York City recently.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

LONDON • The hugely successful boy band One Direction will take a break next year so that the members can pursue separate interests, a report in a British newspaper said on Monday.

The break will start in March after the band, reduced to four members following the departure of Zayn Malik last March, release their fifth album, The Sun said.

"The guys have been together for five years, which is an incredible run for any boy band," a source told the paper. "They fully deserve to have at least a year to work on their own projects. There is absolutely no bad blood between them and they are all 100 per cent behind the decision.

"It is definitely not a split and they fully intend to get back together at some time in the future." There was no confirmation on the band's Twitter feed.

The Guardian quoted a spokesman for the band as saying: "We don't comment on speculation."

Remaining members Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson and Niall Horan will finish promoting their new album in February, after a Christmas break, The Sun said.

But they agreed in a meeting in London over the weekend not to tour for the album, said the tabloid.

This means their last scheduled stadium concert will be in Sheffield, England on Oct 31.

The insider said the hiatus would have happened even if Malik, 22, had not left.

The boys have their own interests to pursue. Sony is eyeing Styles for a solo record, said The Sun, and the break will let the 21-year-old launch a movie career. Tomlinson, 23, is "very much in contention to be a judge on X Factor" next year, the report said.

After Malik quit, the band had vowed to carry on as a group, with Tomlinson saying: "All four of us are 100 per cent committed to staying in One Direction."

The band were the second-highest selling music act in the world last year, shifting 3.2 million albums, topped only by Taylor Swift, said The Sun.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 25, 2015, with the headline 'One Direction taking a break?'. Subscribe