Expecting a daughter with her fiancé Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis will soon join the New Mom's Club.
But in her latest movie The Third Person, she has — and has lost — a child. Playing Julia, a former actress now working as a hotel maid, she's fighting her ex-husband (James Franco) for the right to see the son that was taken away from her in a custody battle. It's far from glamorous, but remains powerful. At a press conference promoting the movie, Mila wouldn't discuss her pregnancy (we know), but she did open up about her on-screen role as mom, dealing with raw emotions, and working with James Franco for the second time.
YourTango: Have you played a mom before?
Mila Kunis: It's my second time playing a mom. My first time was also with James Franco, in a movie called Tar. He played my husband and we had a blonde child with blue eyes. James and I have known each other a long time. We were very lucky in the sense that we didn't need to build chemistry. But we met [before filming] and talked about the relationship between the two of us. Everybody at some point has a relationship they wished went different, that didn't go as well as planned. There are still repercussions and in this case it's a child. And you deal with it the best way you know how.
YourTango: In Third Person you have some really tortured, anguished scenes — different from what you usually play.
Mila Kunis: I loved it. Not having it be the girl-next-door character was a relief. I think my character is incredibly sympathetic and likeable for her faults. Everybody has mistakes they make in life and it's just relative to who you are and how they impact you, and it wasn't hard for me to get to a place where I understood her emotional roller coaster ride. I may not have had a child that I lost but I've had experiences in my life that were equivalent to that emotional depth.
YourTango: Was it hard to shake [the emotion] when the cameras stopped rolling?
Mila Kunis: I'm more like, 'Hey, what's for lunch?' I live it for the 20 minutes I'm on set that I need to live it. I feel like if I did a good job, and I'm emotionally drained at the end of the day, I don't want to keep living it. I want to have a glass of wine and go to bed. On this film, every day I was so emotionally drained I just wanted to go home. I was so tired! I didn't even want to think about it. But also, I do a lot of homework before I show up on set. I mark up my script and then I show up and disregard it. I go with the flow and become present. Then it's more like a tango, a dance with your partner.
YourTango: What do you think is the most interesting thing about being a mom?
Mila Kunis: I'll let you know when it happens!
YourTango: Will you tweet about it?
Mila Kunis: Have I ever? There's your answer!