Simon Cowell said he was “just about to jump off a cliff” when he heard the news that Zayn Malik was leaving One Direction.
On the Late Late Show with James Corden, Simon revealed that he and Zayn had discussion him leaving the band. Simon tried to persuade the young singer to stick around longer, but to no avail.
“Something in him said ‘No, I had enough,'” Simon explained. “Once the decision was made, I dealt with it, then obviously [made] sure that the guys were OK with it…they were shocked as well.”
“Once someone has made their mind up,” said Simon, “They’re going to go.”
Simon didn’t want to push Zayn too much. “He’s only 22. I could see he was a bit stressed, and needed some time off. I had to respect his decision.”
Simon says the rest of the group, in the middle of a world tour, got right back on track with their live shows. “They were amazing,” he said.
The remaining four members of One Direction, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Niall Horan and Liam Payne, have begun work on their next album. “I have a feeling they are going to deliver this year the best record they have every made,” declared Simon. “I’m feeling good.”
Yep, that’s actor, Michael Douglas, sitting with Simon and James on the couch. His sources tell him that “somebody else might have been involved in all this.” Psych! Not really. Ha.
By the way, Ben Winston, the producer of the Late Late Show used to work with Simon on the X Factor UK. He was also involved in a few of One Direction’s video projects. So there’s that.