But taking on her role as Madame Truska in "The Vampire's Assistant" was easier for the actress to tackle for one big reason – it was a small part.
"This was very important for me because I hadn't worked in some time," Salma told Access Hollywood's Shaun Robinson. "I was supposed to do a movie right after Valentina [was born] and it was the first time in my career that I backed out of something because I just couldn't. I couldn't."
Also making the transition back to work easier for Salma was the fact she could bring her daughter to the set, along with several members of her family.
"She did great [on the set]. She's a pro," Salma joked, adding that husband Francois-Henri Pinault and his two children from a previous relationship also visited the set in New Orleans.
The plot and the cast of "The Vampire's Assistant" – which hits theaters on October 23, starring John C. Reilly and directed by Paul Weitz – also added extra incentive for her return to the big screen.
"This movie, it was great. It was in New Orleans, it was with people that I love, some friends and some people that I didn't know but that I've always wanted to work with," she added. "It was the perfect movie too. It's a family movie in a way, and it's about youth and it's about love and family."
As it turns out, getting back to work might have been easy compared to life at home with an active infant.
"I had a talk with her not too long ago. I just said, 'Listen, you have to slow down because I'm a first-time mommy and I'm not ready for some of the things you're doing,'" she laughed. "She talks and she's been walking since 9 months. She counts. She knows the ABCs."
Perhaps the biggest challenge Valentina has presented to her mom – potty training.
"She's potty trained on her own. She did it on her own!" Salma revealed. "She's like, 'Take these off, Mommy. I can go to the bathroom.' But I'm like, 'I don't want you to because I still want you to wear the diaper when we go out because I don't know how to handle the public bathrooms with you. Give me some time.' But it's like, 'No, I don't want to wear the diaper. I can do this, Mommy.'"
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