Thanks to Liam Payne’s careful hinting, it feels moderately safe to assume that the One Direction boys are planning something for their 10 year band anniversary on July 23, 2020.
However, a few eager radio shows and news outlets have run a little wild with these rumors this past week. We gotta do our homework, people.
I am not here to be negative. Anything new from One Direction would be a shining beacon of hope in an otherwise crappy, crappy year. But I want us to be truthful and realistic about what’s happening and what our expectations should be.
The One Direction website gets updated every year
The group’s catalog of five albums and one EP still generates Sony buckets of money every year. You think they’re just gonna let the 1D website fall by the wayside? Absolutely not.
Every year, before and after the “hiatus,” OneDirectionMusic.com (which is owned by your friends and mine, Sony Music Entertainment UK Ltd) has the copyright notice on the footer updated to the current date. The change to 2020 is not a sign of a reunion, it’s just digital property housekeeping.
If you don’t believe us, check the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.
Zayn Malik is no longer a shareholder in 1D Media Limited
He cashed out when he left the band in 2015, and things were shuffled around so that he only makes money on the music he was a part of. For him to come back for a reunion — and make some money, which he’d probably want — more structural changes within the company would have to happen, and it would be public record.
Google knowledge graphs don’t mean shit
Fans were excited to see that, when you Google “One Direction,” Zayn is listed as a member of the band on the knowledge graph in the sidebar. What, do we think Sony emailed Mr. Google and requested he be added back into the search results please?
When you Google “Fifth Harmony,” Camila Cabello is also listed as a member. So this theory quickly falls apart.
They’re obviously not going on tour — or even going to be in the same room
Harry Styles, Niall Horan, and Louis Tomlinson all have their own solo tours currently hanging in the balance because of COVID-19. The three have postponed and/or canceled multiple shows already. Now would be an absurd time to announce a One Direction reunion tour when millions of dollars in tickets is in limbo.
It’s also highly unlikely that anything the boys do (be it four or five of them) would involve them being physically together — purely because of the pandemic. If we want to remain realistic about this, it’s safer to assume they’re planning a documentary. Or maybe a nice perfume.
A new single is also possible, with all the members recording remotely. But “hope” is a four-letter word.
Harry, Louis, Niall, and Liam didn’t *just* start following Zayn on Twitter
They’ve followed him for ages on there and didn’t even unfollow him when he left the band. Zayn, however, does not follow his four former bandmates anymore. Do with that information what you will.