“You guys don’t mind? It’s not real,” Katherine Heigl says as she brings a pink metal electronic cigarette to her mouth, an LED in the tip glowing blue as she inhales, blue mist escaping as she exhales.


The device is to help kick her smoking habit. “You get your hit of nicotine but you blow out water vapor. You’re not inhaling tar, there’s no carcinogens. And they say nicotine is no worse for you than coffee. I mean, a few people say that, so I’m going with that.”


A new mom to adopted daughter Naleigh, Heigl is keen to quit smoking, just one of the changes she’s made since becoming a parent. That change in life made it easy to take on her latest project, Life As We Know It, in which Heigl and co-star Josh Duhamel are thrust into parenthood when their best friends die and leave them custody of their infant daughter.


“I related to the movie because in my own life I was getting ready to become a mom and wanting to start a family, but I didn’t expect to be doing both at the same time, so it was interesting and overwhelming for sure,” she says.


“I couldn’t show up to set with the same kind of focus I had in the past on other projects because I was really distracted,” Heigl says. “So what you see in my performance is pretty much who I was at that time and all I had. I gave it all I got, but there wasn’t a lot of craft involved at that point. It was just instinct. It was a fascinating psych experiment.”