Simon Cowell helped form — and sign — Fifth Harmony into pop stardom, and they've got his vote of confidence as the group shows recent signs of wear. Well...he's sort of confident, anyway.

Cowell, with Demi Lovato, united the five X-Factor contestants into a group during Season 2 of the American series. As such, a reporter from a site called The New Music Buzz asked Cowell to weigh in on their current rumored tumult.

"I have to ask you, what is going on with Fifth Harmony at the moment?" the reporter inquired.

"Same with any group," Cowell replied. "You know...we have conversations about what they want to do, we've got to listen to them. It'll be fine." But then, Cowell turned to the camera with a (tell-tale?) grimace: "I hope!"

The exchange comes around the 45-second mark in the video below.


It's a valid question, given recent developments: After the original final four U.S. 7/27 tour dates were hacked off their schedule, additional European shows have now been canceled, and the group hasn't offered an explanation as to why.

A few days prior to the cancellations, member Lauren Jauregui broke down in tears onstage during a performance of "No Way" (she later claimed the lyrics made her "extra emotional" that day). And not two weeks prior to that, Camila Cabello fled the stage at a St. Louis show due to anxiety.

Fifth Harmony admitted the rigors of girl-group stardom in a May 2016 Billboard profile, in which Cabello discussed her anxiety issues and writer Chris Martin wrote that "by 11 a.m. at the hotel, everyone is crying."

Hernandez is usually the group's rock, but she chokes up immediately when it's her turn. She keeps the details vague, but cites "awful mental health situations" and "pain on a lot of levels." Jauregui, the most outspoken of the women, connects it all to "this industry": "They sell you this ­present of rainbows and butterflies, and as a 16-year-old that's what I bought. It's why I did X Factor and why I ended up in a group. But then you're working so hard, so young. [Meanwhile] my friends are in college, ­telling me about their days and what they're studying. You're having to put on a smile on a red carpet. It's like, 'Who am I? Am I for myself or for this?' "

"I love touring, but the schedule ­traumatized me," Dinah Hansen told Billboard. "I was like, 'What kind of job are we doing?' I watched my great-grandmother be buried on FaceTime."

Meanwhile there's still no formal comment from Fifth Harmony's social accounts; they're instead promoting the upcoming "That's My Girl" video.

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