Zoa Morani
'Bhaag Johnny' actress Zoa MoraniPR handout

Zoa Morani, daughter of film producer Karim Morani, made her Bollywood debut with "Always Kabhi Kabhi" in 2011, but she disappeared from the silver screen for a while.

Now, she is set to make a comeback with "Bhaag Johnny" opposite Kunal Khemu. And, in an exclusive interview with IBTimes India, Zoa reveals why she decided to make a comeback with "Bhaag Johnny" and who is her role model in Bollywood.

You made your debut with "Always Kabhi Kabhi" in 2011, but after that you have been missing from the silver screen... 

The gap was not intentional though. I just chose to prepare myself better and focus on films where my character is integral to the plot. Honestly, belonging to a filmy family I have seen the effort that goes into making a film so I did not want to select projects randomly. In addition, I got involved in theatre, which kept me occupied. I worked in back to back plays, one of them written by Gulzaar Saab. But now that I am back, hopefully you will see more of me now.

So, why "Bhaag Johnny" now?

Because of the script. "Bhaag Johnny" is a thriller and the way the story has been laid out intrigued me. The narrative revolves around my character Taniya, a simple and independent girl living in Thailand who happens to be in a situation where she has to trust a complete stranger with her life. When I and my mother went for the narration to Vikram Bhatt, we were thrilled to hear the story and it kept us on the edge throughout.

You did two highly acclaimed plays, so any plans of going back to theatre?

I have not moved away from it. I have been fortunate enough to do Panchatantra Ki Paanch Kahaniya, penned by Gulzaar Saab and then Taj Mahal Ka Udghatan with Vrijesh Hirjee who is a renowned theatre personality. The experiences have changed and improved me as an actor. Performing live on stage calls for a different set of skills and I am happy to develop them through my stint with theatre. I would love to continue doing it.

Zoa Morani
'Bhaag Johnny' actress Zoa MoraniPR handout

If given a choice, what would you choose -- films or theatre -- and why?

There is no choice as both can co-exist. We have a lot of actors in the industry who continue being a part of theatre despite doing good in films. Both are very different mediums and as I said, the stage and the instant feedback from audience gives a different level of confidence and command on the art which is essential for an artist. Though my core focus would be films because that's the dream I started with but I would love to be on the stage whenever I get a chance.

Who do you look up to as your role model in Bollywood?

That would be Deepika Padukone. She has gone better with each performance and has managed to maintain the same poise and grace all along. And one actor I idolize would be Waheeda Rehman. Her humility and honesty would always show in her portrayals which remains a big inspiration for me.

Any director you wish to work with?

That list is never-ending. Every day some name or the other keeps getting added. There are so many notable filmmakers in Bollywood and I would love to work with all of them. Not only the popular ones, I wish to work with the new directors as well who are making content driven films.