Already have an account?
Get back to the

You Must See Zayn Malik and Niall Horan’s Awkward Hello at the AMAs 2016

Can you feel the tension? Niall Horan greeted his former One Direction bandmate Zayn Malik at the 2016 American Music Awards on Sunday, November 20 — and it was awkward, to say the least.

During the star-studded award ceremony at Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater, Horan, 23, went out of his way to approach and say hello to Malik, 23, while walking through the audience. The moment was caught on camera by a fan who attended the show.

Zayn Malik and Niall Horan
Zayn Malik and Niall Horan

Related: PHOTOS: American Music Awards 2016 Red Carpet Fashion: What the Stars Wore

In a video shared by Twitter user @EverglowAnne, the Irish singer is seen walking around the venue with his entourage close behind. At one point, Horan spots the British hunk out of the corner of his eye and stretches out his hand for a brief handshake. Malik appeared to be caught off guard, but gingerly reached out his hand to reciprocate the gesture.

Related: PHOTOS: American Music Awards 2016 Red Carpet Fashion: Best Dressed Stars

The video immediately went viral on Twitter, and fans were quick to point out the tension between the stars. “Look at niall trying to be the sweetheart he is and zayn acts like he doesn’t give a sh–t lmao nice,” one user wrote. Another simply stated: “This is so awkward.”

One Direction Niall Horan Zayn Malik Louis Tomlinson Liam Payne Harry Styles
Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne and Harry Styles of One Direction attend the One Direction iHeartRadio Album Release Party in Burbank, CA, Nov. 22, 2013.

The former bandmates were at the AMAs to support their respective solo projects. Horan performed his first single, “This Town,” while Malik took home the AMA for New Artist of the Year. (Malik was also there to support his girlfriend, Gigi Hadid, who cohosted the show with comedian Jay Pharaoh.)

As the “Pillowtalk” crooner accepted his award, he quipped, “Wow. This just has my name on it, right?”

Related: PHOTOS: The Biggest Boy Bands of All Time!

Ahead of the show, Horan gushed to Entertainment Tonight about how excited he was to reunite with Malik. “I haven’t spoken to him in a few months or whatever, and haven’t seen him in a while, so I’m looking forward to seeing him,” he told the news outlet. “This is a show that [One Direction] had success at back in previous years, and had some good performances and had some great nights at, and I’m looking forward to making a few more memories.”

Us Weekly exclusively reported in January that One Direction was splitting up, making their extended hiatus permanent. Malik previously left the group in March 2015 due to stress and anxiety.

In this article

Got a Tip form close button
Got a tip for US?
We're All Ears for Celebrity Buzz!