By: Jon Corrigan
It’s crazy to think it’s been 15 years since Justin Timberlake said “Bye Bye Bye” to ‘N Sync. (I only slightly apologize for that sentence.)
If you asked his fellow band mates, Lance Bass, JC Chasez, Joey Fatone or Chris Kilpatrick, why Timberlake decided to walk away at the height of the group’s success in 2002, you’d likely get a variety of answers.
Timberlake gave his own version of the truth in The Hollywood Reporter‘s upcoming Feb. 17 issue.
“We were on a stadium tour, and I just felt like the whole thing was too big. It started as a fun snowball fight that was becoming an avalanche,” the singer remembers. “And, also, I was growing out of it.”
“I felt like I cared more about the music than some of the other people in the group,” he explains. “I felt like I had other music I wanted to make and that I needed to follow my heart.”
In the decade and a half since, Timberlake’s decision to separate himself from ‘N Sync has paid dividends, as he’s found success as a solo artist and in Hollywood with films like Alpha Dog, The Social Network, Friends With Benefits, Runner Runner and others.
“I’m just following my gut in the decisions that I make about what I’m going to do next. I’m mostly just glad this is all working out because I really can’t do anything else,” Timberlake says. “I’m not gifted at anything else.”