The Avatar beauty and her husband Marco Perego have been doting on little Cy and Bowie since they were born in November (14), and Saldana is not looking forward to the end of her maternity leave.

She tells, "I'm pretty sure that every parent - not just every mum - would (take time off) as long as your work doesn't suffer. But we have to pay bills and at the end of the day, I think that's the best example we can set to our children.

"We're very determined and we can't just leave everything behind and just focus on them. But it's painful."

The 36 year old has a busy schedule ahead of her - she will soon reprise her role as Uhura in Star Trek 3, which is due for release next year (16), while she is also set to return to James Cameron's Avatar franchise for three sequels, the first of which will hit movie theatres in 2017.