Julia Roberts is back on set following her mother's death

Julia Roberts got to work on a new film after saying goodbye to her mother, Betty Lou Motes, who reportedly passed away aged 80 on Thursday (Feb. 19) following a battle with lung cancer.

Julia stars opposite Nicole Kidman and Chiwetel Ejiofor in The Secret in their Eyes, for which she was spotted shooting scenes early this week.

Ever the professional, Julia managed to get back into character in jeans and a long-sleeved shirt, carrying a wicker basket, though the star is no doubt still suffering a fresh bout of pain.

CLICK ON PHOTOS TO ENLARGEJulia Roberts, pictured previously on set, returned to work a few days after her mom’s death

During breaks on the Los Angeles set, Julia was pictured clutching onto a coffee and her script, hiding behind a pair of black sunglasses.

Nicole was on hand to comfort her co-star and would have been the best person to sympathise with her. The Australian beauty lost her own father Dr Antony Kidman to a heart attack in September.

At the time of his death, Nicole, who was extremely close to her dad, took to Facebook to write a message from herself and her husband Keith Urban. “We are all heartbroken but knowing we are in the hearts and thoughts of others is so comforting. Sending love, Nic and Keith xx,” she wrote.

Betty Lou Motes, pictured in 1993, was reported to have died of lung cancer

In their new film together, Nicole and Julia star in the remake of a 2009 Argentine thriller. The film is about a retired criminal investigator Benjamín Espósito who writes a novel and hopes to find closure for one of his past unresolved homicide cases, and for his unreciprocated love with his superior.

While it is not yet clear what part Julia plays, Nicole has taken on the role of Irene, a former colleague of Benjamín who helps him make sense of the past. Nicole and Chiwetel seem to have a romantic connection in the film, as they were previously pictured embracing in one scene.

Chiwetel Ejiofor and Nicole Kidman, who presented at the Oscars, both star with Julia Roberts in the new film

Julia’s mom Betty was said to be living with the actress in her family home for the past year. She was reportedly being treated at the Saint John’s Health Centre in Santa Monica, California at the time of her death.

Previous reports claimed that Betty was diagnosed with cancer two years ago and had surgery to remove part of her lungs. She also underwent intensive radiation treatments, and photos taken last April showed Betty walking with a cane.

Her death came almost a year after Julia’s half-sister Nancy, who had a complicated relationship with the star, reportedly killed herself of an apparent drug overdose.

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