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Hailee Steinfeld Admits Song About Ex Niall Horan Was the Hardest to Write on Her New Album

Keeping it real. Hailee Steinfeld opened up about the challenges of writing her emotional breakup track “Wrong Direction,” which is rumored to be about her ex-boyfriend  Niall Horan.

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When Steinfeld, 23, joined SiriusXM Hits 1’s The Morning Mash Up to discuss her new Half Written Story EP, she admitted whether there was “one particular song that was harder” for her to write.

“Yea, there were definitely ones that were more fun,” the Dickinson actress revealed on Thursday, May 7. “ I know there are some records that are just, like, you’ll know when you hear them but there’s a song on the record called ‘Wrong Direction,’ which I found more difficult to write than the others just because of … I mean, just being in that headspace.”

Steinfeld continued, “And what’s so strange about music is you write it and then you’re in that headspace obviously when you’re writing it and then it’s done. You can pack that away and move on to the next song. Then all of a sudden you’re, like, performing and you’re like, ‘OK, this is still very much attached and it’s just like I never left the studio.’”

Hailee Steinfeld Says Song About Ex Niall Horan Was the Hardest to Write
Hailee Steinfeld and Niall Horan Jason Merritt/Radarpics/Shutterstock ;JM Enternational/Shutterstock

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The Oscar nominee noted that “it’s just a weird feeling” to continue revisiting such personal songs after they’ve been written. “It just kind of lingers until I feel like you’re far enough removed from the situation you’re talking about,” she added.

Steinfeld and Horan, 26, were first linked in January 2018 after attending a performance of Hamilton together in London’s West End production. Four months later, the former duo were spotted getting cozy at Saddle Ranch in Los Angeles.

Us Weekly confirmed in December 2018 that Steinfeld and Horan called it quits after 10 months of dating. At the time, a source revealed to Us that the split happened “months” before it was publicized.

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“Niall wrapped up his tour and had more free time, but Hailee’s work schedule really ramped up, so they didn’t have time for a relationship,” the insider shared. “They still have a lot of love for each other.”

Ahead of Horan’s Heartbreak Weather album’s March release, the former One Direction member spoke to Billboard about how a recent breakup inspired much of the record. “Going through heartbreak helped write the ballads, even some of the happy songs — the sad songs that are dressed up as happy songs sometimes,” he said in October 2019.

“I have stuff that I want to write about on my mind all the time,” he continued. “I had just gone through a break up, which helps when it comes to writing songs, I guess. It helps vent the emotions.”

Steinfeld’s new EP, Half Written Story, is out on Friday, May 8.

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