Christina Aguilera was motivated by her abusive childhood for her new movie role.

The 'Dirrty' singer takes on the part of tough girl Ali in her first feature film 'Burlesque' and says thinking about her time growing up created the feelings of intense emotion she wanted to convey in the role.

Christina - who regularly watched her father abuse her mother - told Britain's OK! magazine: "The girls I play, Ali, has a rough past - her mother dies when she's very young and she's been in foster homes. I could relate to that pain, growing up in an abusive household. That gave me great motivation to provoke my tears for those scenes where I had to really pour it on. I felt it deeply, to go through a lot of those things that brought up a lot of painful memories."

Christina stars alongside legendary entertainer Cher in the movie and admits the pair have now become very close.

She said: "Cher's embraced me with open arms, it's meant the world. She's been very much like a mentor to me, but we get together and it's like we're old girlfriends, we'll talk and talk. I really adore her."