Whether Styles really is just doing whatever the hell he wants, or if his recent surprising choices are carefully calculated to leave his boy band image behind, there's no denying that it's working in his favor.
Styles has managed to hold onto millions of loyal One Direction fans, unlike some of his bandmates, through mere good sporting. You'd be hard-pressed to find a bad word spoken about the band -- or his fans -- from Styles's mouth. And thanks to his new rock n' roll sound and a solid performance in Dunkirk, he's turning skeptics into fans by the thousands.
It's hard to imagine Styles quitting acting so soon, and now that he's proven his legitimate talent, Hollywood's biggest directors may well come knocking. His Dunkirk performance may not be a perfect gauge for Styles' potential as a leading man, but it's a promising start indeed.