Celebrity Then And Now
Zayn Malik
Name: Zayn Malik
Birthdate: January 1, 1970
Famous Years: 2010-Present
Currently Known For: Solo Career
Networth: $65 MillionFamous For: Former Member of One Direction
Zayn Malik
Name Zayn Malik
Birthdate January 1, 1970
Famous Years 2010-Present
Currently Known For Solo Career
Networth $65 Million
Famous For Former Member of One Direction

Boy bands that are put together by record producers always seem to have one star that shines the brightest. Names like Justin Timberlake, Robbie Williams or Nick Jonas come to mind, and you can add Zayn Malik to that list, as well.

Malik, who comes from a Pakistani heritage, was born in England on January 12, 1993 and spent much of his childhood listening to a wide range of music. Malik took a particular interest in the rap genre, and started writing his own music as a teenager and performing on stage in front of his peers. Malik didn’t know at the time that fame was right around the corner, and actually had plans on graduating from high school and attending college so that he could be a teacher.

“The X Factor” is one of those reality shows that has set out to try and make big stars out of common people that you might not have ever heard of otherwise. When he was 17 years old, Malik auditioned to be a contestant on “The X Factor” in 2010, and made it past the first audition, but was then eliminated.

However, Malik was kept around on the show as a contestant when Simon Cowell and Nicole Scherzinger (both judges on the show) teamed Malik up with Niall Horan, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson and Harry Styles. The group would be known as One Direction, and they would finish third place in the competition. Even though they didn’t win “The X Factor”, Cowell himself still signed One Direction to a contract because he saw massive potential.

It turned out that Cowell was right as Malik and the members of One Direction became one of the biggest successes of 2011, releasing the album “Up All Night” that featured hit songs such as “What Makes You Beautiful” and “One Thing”. The album was a huge success for One Direction as they became global phenomenons and followed it up one year later with the album “Take Me Home” and in 2013 with “Midnight Memories” that kept the momentum going.

However, Malik wasn’t always happy when being part of One Direction, and he surprisingly announced that he was leaving the group in March 2015. Malik told reporters that he was feeling too stressed, and wanted to step away from the spotlight for a bit and enjoy living a normal life as a 22 year old. Not too long after leaving the group, Malik revealed that he didn’t want to join with them in the first place.

“I always wanted to go, from the first year really,” he said. “I never really wanted to be in the band. I just gave it a go because it was there at the time.” He cited one of the biggest reasons for wanting to leave One Direction was because “I realized I couldn’t put any input in,” he said. “I couldn’t give my opinion on this or that because it didn’t fit the grain of what we were as a band and what we represented.”

Malik fell out of communication with the band almost immediately after leaving, too, he admitted. “Our relationships have definitely changed since we were in a band together,” he said. “But I think that’s just life. Everybody grows up; two of the guys have got kids now. But no, I don’t talk to any of them, really.” He also spoke about his relationship with fellow bandmate Harry Styles, saying that “To be honest, I never really spoke to Harry even when I was in the band. So I didn’t really expect that much of a relationship with him when I left, and I haven’t (had one) to be honest.”

Malik wouldn’t be away from music for too long after leaving One Direction, and also focused on becoming an icon in the fashion industry and it seemed that he was also looking to start a family. Malik had been dating Little Mix member Perrie Edwards and were engaged, but announced their split just five months after Malik had left his band. He then started dating model Gigi Hadid, and they also appeared to be headed for marriage until announcing in 2018 that they were no more.

While the latter relationship was going on, Malik embarked on his solo career that started in 2016 with the release of his first single “Pillowtalk” that became a hit internationally. The album, “Mind of Mine” was released later in the year and even passed the remaining members of One Direction in the process. Malik followed up the success with a hit song from the “Fifty Shades Darker Soundtrack” and announced in 2017 that he would be releasing a new album called “Dusk Till Dawn” that released in September of that year, and he’s still putting out new music rather consistently.

While it might have been One Direction that made Malik famous, it seems that he has the potential for the biggest solo career of the members of the former boy band. He’s certainly off to the hottest start and is showing no signs of slowing down. As for a possible One Direction reunion down the road; don’t rule it out. “Who knows,” Malik said. “I’ve said it before: Never say never. If I wanted to come back in 10, 15 years time, then yeah, why not? If I didn’t want to (be in One Direction) then, I might not. It just depends on how I’m feeling at the time.”