The singer talks relationships, independence and kissing James Franco in her ELLE interview

By Nick Maslow
Updated September 16, 2015 03:20 PM
Credit: Liz Collins/ELLE

Selena Gomez is ready for her Revival.

As the singer, 23, gears up for the release of her new album on Oct. 9 and promotes her new single “Same Old Love”, she’s reflecting on the buildup to her new chapter in ELLE‘s October cover story.

Gomez shed new light on her previous on-again, off-again relationship with Justin Bieber, 21, in the telling interview, maintaining she’s friends with Bieber and will “forever support him and love him.” However, the former Disney star didn’t close the door on a future with him. When asked if they would ever get back together, Gomez replied, “I don’t know!”

“We grew up together,” Gomez said. “I think people want it to be different … We’re too young for [drama]. Nobody was married. There was no … I respect him. And I think he respects me, in a healthy manner.

Although Gomez has already moved on from Bieber – she was linked to DJ Zedd earlier this year – the now-single star is not too concerned about relationships.

“Finding somebody is not my main focus,” she said. “I’ve dated people. I’ve been on a few dates, which is really exciting. But I’ve never wanted to get into anything serious, because I kind of did that. I have my guard up. I like to meet people in organic settings. Hanging out with a group of people and meeting through mutual people.”

It’s also been a transformative year on the professional front. As ELLE points out, Gomez changed her business relationship with her mom (Mandy Teefey was her longtime manager); ended her Kmart clothing line Dream Out Loud; and signed a new record deal with Interscope.

“I wanted to be a little uncomfortable,” she said. “That’s why I made all of these decisions within a year. I wanted to be my own person. I wanted to test myself. I wanted to see if I could really do it.”

But Gomez isn’t going it alone – she has sweet support from pal Taylor Swift, who told the magazine watching Gomez “take ownership of her life and her creative decisions in a new way has been a really beautiful thing to watch.”

“It isn’t easy for her to put herself out there, knowing that a lot of the media will try and twist her lyrics into a headline about her ex-boyfriend,” Swift said. “She doesn’t care anymore. Now she knows that good music rises above and outlasts the weekly cycle of ridiculous headlines. We talk about this all the time. What ultimately matters is helping someone you’ve never met go through a hard time because you articulated how they feel in your music.”

Gomez is also juggling her film career. She’s set to grace the silver screen in 2016’s In Dubious Battle alongside costar and director James Franco. The period piece, which is based on John Steinbeck’s 1936 book of the same name, has a kissing scene that took more than seven takes.

“I joked with everyone, ‘We’re doing it again, huh? He’s the director!'” Gomez said while laughing. “He’s a good kisser.”