Alia Bhatt is gearing up for many new roles in her life. She’s a mommy-to-be, she’s enjoying the attention from her mother-in-law Neetu Kapoor and of course the love and attention from hubby Ranbir Kapoor. On the professional side, she’s making her debut as a producer with Darlings, a dark comedy that makes a big play on domestic violence, abusive life partners and how women have a tendency to sweep their emotions under the carpet. In an exclusive chat with ETimes, Alia opens up about all the new aspects of her life. She also reveals how the negative comments and trolling on her pregnancy got overshadowed by the love and adulation. Read on…

You’ve turned producer, you’re a new mother, you’ve recently married. Do you believe in the power of manifestation?

I don’t sit and manifest things, but I do believe in things strongly. But even then, you will not get everything in life. Just before a release I can wish for it to do well really, really strongly, but even then, if the film doesn’t do well, that doesn’t mean my manifestation didn’t work, it just means that the film didn’t work. Sometimes things are not in your control but you always need belief to get you through the day and through tough moments in life.

Were you disappointed with all the negative reactions and noise that came out after you and Ranbir announced your pregnancy?

It was a beautiful experience. There was so much love and positivity. We received so much warmth. When you talk about the noisy people, that I expected because every beautiful thing has a detractor. Chaand pe bhi daag hai. I wasn’t surprised by the negative reactions nor was I bothered by them. I feel these things originate from a very stupid and shallow space. I remember only the good things and there’s still so much love coming in. Why not focus on the positivity instead of focussing on a few nonsensical eyebrows.

In our exclusive interview, Karan Johar had revealed that he got emotional when you broke the news of your pregnancy to him. How do you feel about that?

I will never forget that moment, because Karan was crying wearing that cap, that was very very sweet of him. But Karan and I sit and laugh about it today, but one will always remember those moments when you’re sharing the big news with the loved ones in your life. We are all an amalgamation of our memories and it feels nice to look back.

From being a naive actress who broke through with Student Of The Year, to being roasted for your general knowledge to now being a power producer, how do you look back at your journey of 10 years in showbiz?

When people ask me, would you go back and change anything about your life, I always say I genuinely have no regrets. I have nothing that I would change in the past because the person I am today is because of all the steps I took in the past. I feel very grateful that I have a voice that can put content together. I can fuel ideas that come to me from young directors and writers and that’s a beautiful position to be in. It’s a position of responsibility, too. I have worked really hard to get where I am today. Hard work is a given in any field, but I feel none of this would have been achievable without the blood, sweat, tears and the many sleepless nights. But I have endured. I am excited about building my production house and putting out more content.

How much of your personal relationships and feelings did you put into the character in Darlings, considering you are experiencing motherhood now as does your character in the film?

Relationships are always different, and I don’t have a lot in common with my character in Darlings. That’s what makes the character so fresh. When it comes to motherhood of course, there are certain universal things like – friendship, love and there are layers like sometimes you’re the mother and then at times she’s the mother or vice versa. Those things are meant to be similar, but not just to me, but to the audience as well, so that they can relate to the characters and their dynamic.

An abusive relationship is a central theme in your film. How do you think women should respond to abuse and violence in their relationships?

It really pains me to know that there are so many people who are fearful and living their life alone. That’s the biggest fear for so many women. How will I do everything alone?

It’s difficult to say how a woman should react to an abusive relationship. They should ideally separate themselves from it and I think that’s what we’re trying to say through the film. You have your own identity, you have your own needs and what tends to happen in our society is that we are taught to put our partner’s needs before us. This is a representation of an abusive relationship between a man and wife, two life partners. But sometimes it can happen in other dynamics as well. Violence of any kind, when inflicted on an individual is not okay, it’s not permissible.

Women who are in an abusive relationship should have the self awareness and self responsibility to know that it’s not their fault. Do not pay heed to the point that people will say you are doing wrong. It’s not something that you need to tolerate. People assume ki aisa hota hai, so just go with it and suck it up. But why should that be so? There’s no need to do that, you have just one life. Different people will respond to this situation differently, but at some point, they should respond at some point.

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