One Direction: a timeline

A look at the key moments in the story of One Direction so far.

One Direction with Simon Cowell (centre). Photo by Jon Furniss / Invision / AP
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2010 All five members, unknown to each other at the time, enter season seven of the X Factor UK. The show's judges, including Simon Cowell and Dannii Minogue, decide the boys would work best as a unit and put them together in the boot-camp stage. The group ends up finishing in third place.

2011 After their X Factor experience, the band sets to work immediately, and returns 10 months later with their debut album, Up All Night. Propelled by the hit single What Makes You Beautiful, the album tops both the UK and American charts.

2012 The band's second album, Take Me Home, is released, and by this stage the group are a bona fide stadium act. During the tour, Zayn Malik, who is dating his now-fiancée Perrie Edwards from the girl band Little Mix, builds a reputation as the group's bad boy, with several reported love-cheat scandals.

2013 Their third album, Midnight Memories, is released. By this point, the boys have reportedly accumulated more than US$25 million (Dh91.8m) in wealth.

May 2014 Malik continues to be in the news for wrong reasons. This time, a video is leaked online of him smoking marijuana with his fellow 1D member Louis Tomlinson, followed by further images surfacing of Malik smoking what appears to be joints.

November 2014 One Direction release their fourth album in four years, and Malik fails to travel with the band for a promotional tour of America, prompting reports of possible drug addiction, which Malik angrily denies.

March 2015 The Philippines' Bureau of Immigration impose a $5,000 "weed bond" on Malik and Tomlinson, with the money to be forfeited if the duo are caught with illegal substances.

March 19, 2015 Malik quits One Direction's tour with the band stating he "signed off with stress and is flying back to the UK to recuperate".

March 25, 2015 One Direction confirm Zayn Malik has left the group permanently. "I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight," Malik says in a statement.