Camila Cabello de-legitimized Fifth Harmony’s name when she chose to leave her group mates behind in order to embark on a solo career. Camila’s abrupt departure took the five-member group down to only four and ignited a slew of “Fourth” Harmony jokes at their expense.
On January 5, in an effort to show solidarity amongst the members, Fifth Harmony released a brand new photoshoot featuring the remaining members. Pictured left to right is Lauren Jauregui, Normani Kordei, Dinah Jane Hansen, and Ally Hernandez.
Since this was the group’s first photo shoot without Camilla, it obviously attracted a ton of attention from their fans. It also caught the attention of Ellen Degeneres. The talk show host poked at Fifth Harmony’s bad fortune, by digitally inserting herself into their shoot, as if she was was Camila’s replacement, according to the IBT Times.
When Camila Cabello caught wind of the hilarious edit, she retweeted the photo with the following caption.
“Man!! replaced so soon!! Ellen, you were always a better dancer than me anyway…” wrote Cabello. This comment, though done in jest, didn’t sit well with Camila’s fans, many of which blame Camila’s solo aspirations for the tension between the group.
There had been rumblings about discontent among the group’s members for months prior to Camila’s exit. It’s been said to stem from Camila’s side projects that she completed while still in the group, in secret from her bandmates. Her first collaboration, a duet with Shawn Mendes called “I Know What You Did Last Summer,” came out in 2015. The second, released near the close of 2016, was called “Bad Things,” and featured Machine Gun Kelly. Both were moderate successes, though it’s yet to be proven if Camila can carry an entire song on her own.
On Dec. 18, 2016, Fifth Harmony’s management released a statement on the group’s behalf which proved that there those rumors were more truth than fiction.
“After 4 and a half years together, we have been informed via her representatives that Camila has decided to leave Fifth Harmony. We wish her well. You Harmonizers have been there with us since the beginning, you’ve supported us, you’ve rejoiced and cried with us, you’ve grown with us, and with your love and support, we will continue on. That being said, we are excited to announce that we will be moving forward with the four of us – Ally Brooke, Normani Kordei, Dinah Jane, and Lauren Jauregui for our fans. We are four strong, committed women who will continue with Fifth Harmony as well as our solo endeavors. We are excited for our future, and we can’t wait for what the new year brings. Harmonizers, we are in this together. We love you with all of our hearts.”
Soon after Fifth Harmony’s announcement was posted, Fifth Harmony’s massive fanbase erupted into chaos online. Camila Cabello has always been a polarizing force within the group. Some fans were sad to see Camilla go, while some felt that she had definitely overstayed her welcome. Camila Cabello hit back and presented her fans with a narrative that painted herself in more favorable light. According to Camilla, she learned that she was no longer apart of the group when the rest of the world did, via Fifth Harmony’s message.
In other words, Camila is claiming that she had no intent on leaving the group and that she was kicked out.
The back and forth didn’t stop there. Fifth Harmony then released a second joint statement, addressing each of Camila’s claims and breaking down their efforts to keep Camila involved.
“Over the past several months we have consistently made every effort to sit down and discuss the future of Fifth Harmony with Camila. We have spent the past year and a half (since her initial solo endeavor) trying to communicate to her and her team all of the reasons why we felt Fifth Harmony deserved at least one more album of her time, given the success of this past year that we’d all worked so hard for. We called for group meetings which she refused, we asked LA Reid and the label to step in and try to set meetings, which again, she refused. We even went as far as group counseling which she did not show up to. So no, after months of rejection from her and her team, these supposed lengthy conversations in fact never happened, although we pleaded. We have tried with exhausted efforts and hearts to keep this group alive as the five of us, and we want it to be very clear that unfortunately those efforts are not mutual.”
Camila has yet to respond to Fifth Harmony’s second joint message, which has led fans to believe that Fifth Harmony’s accounts of events paint a more accurate photo.
It was definitely shocking to see Fifth Harmony fall victim to losing a member at the height of their career, but it’s not exactly uncommon. In March of 2015, hugely successful boyband, One Direction, who also gained fame via X Factor, though on the U.K.’s version, lost Zayn Malik to his solo aspirations.
One Direction bounced back. Fifth Harmony should, too.
[Featured Image by Gustavo Caballero/Getty]