Louis Tomlinson has a rich history, and his new documentary reveals everything. Tomlinson considers his options for life after One Direction in the new documentary, “All of Those Voices.”
Of course, Tomlinson’s tenure in the massive English boy band, One Direction, founded in 2010 on X Factor, is the most well-known chapter in his life. Louis Tomlinson: All of Those Voices (now playing in theatres) starts right after the chapter concludes.
As the band—which also featured Niall Horan, Harry Styles, and Liam Payne—performed their final concert before departing and splitting, that Tomlinson never wanted. The movie began in December 2015.
The fifth One Direction member, Zayn Malik, had departed the group a few months earlier. His departure was the “beginning of the end” for Louis Tomlinson.
Before the performance, Louis Tomlinson and his bandmates huddled backstage at the London O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire. The scene, recorded in December 2022 and serves as the opening to Charlie Lightning’s new documentary All of Those Voices, had a certain familiarity.
Instead of four, there were five other band members around him, and the 2,000-person space was far smaller than the stadiums he had become accustomed to playing in with One Direction.
Tomlinson wasn’t sure he would ever be able to perform in front of an audience of any magnitude again after One Direction disbanded in December 2015.
The confusion was exacerbated because, as he explains in the new movie, he had only just discovered his place in the group, fitting in as a songwriter when he first struggled to make an impact as a lead vocalist. Except for the followers he still had from his time in the biggest boy band in the world, Tomlinson was starting anew.
The loss of his mother only days before his first solo television performance, followed by the passing of his younger sister, Félicité, less than two years later, knocked him down just as he could stand up and regain his feeling of artistic self-worth. At age 18, Félicité passed away from an accidental drug overdose.
Tomlinson revealed in the documentary that he welcomed a child in 2016, making him the first member of One Direction to do so. The musician felt ready to be a dad because he was the older brother of four sisters. His son Freddie was born that January and currently lives in California full-time with his mother.
All of Those Voices mixes historical footage from the past 12 years with narration from Tomlinson as he deals with suffering and parenting and rekindles his creative flame after the smoke clears.
Here are six essential lessons to get learned from the currently showing movie.
One Direction fans started several initiatives while the band was still active. They attempted to market “No Control” as a single without the band’s assistance or their label and even once sought to raise money through crowdsourcing to buy the band out of their management contract. They vocally argued in the beginning for additional solo vocals for Tomlinson and Niall Horan. Tomlinson was fighting for that as well in the background.
Earlier in 2015, Zayn Malik parted ways with the band, and within a year, he launched his debut solo album. Following in 2017 were Styles, Horan, and Liam Payne. Tomlinson was the latest artist to release a debut solo album, “Walls,” in 2020.
Despite the breakup, the band’s spirit continues to exist thanks to its members and enduring fan base. On stage, Tomlinson incorporates their 2014 single “Night Changes” with an acoustic rock twist into his tracklist. While Payne’s early solo concerts featured the Ed Sheeran-penned track “Little Things,” Horan frequently chooses to remake “Drag Me Down” or “Fools Gold,” and even Styles won’t close a set without having played their first smash, “What Makes You Beautiful.”
Tomlinson’s solo career is starting to resemble some of the chaos of One Direction after two albums. Mainly when he tours South America, some fans camp for months to get a good place. They hold signs reading “You Saved Me,” and Jesus gets Photoshopped with his image.
They beg their parents in letters to let them sleep on the streets so they can see him up close. The promoters informed him he couldn’t sell out the shows, but they still drew large crowds. They grab his clothing, ears, and anything else they can handle as he stands on barricades.
While coping with the tragic losses of his mother and sister, the documentary follows him as he attempts to establish his voice as a solo musician. His breaking the Guinness World Record with his COVID live-streamed concert, his son Freddie seeing him perform live for the first time, and sold-out arena shows on a solo global tour are some of the other poignant experiences.
Fans remember One Direction as one of the finest teams the world has ever seen, even though the band members are currently dispersed worldwide with their various solo careers. And at least its memory will endure forever.
The documentary “All of Those Voices” will hit the theatre on Thursday, March 23.