Zoa Morani is no stranger to the glam world of Bollywood, being the daughter of a producer. However, after making her debut in ‘Always Kabhi Kabhi’ in 2011, Morani has kept a low profile somewhat. She is back to make her mark once again in the forthcoming ‘Bhaag Johnny’ which is slated for release this Friday.
BizAsia got the chance to catch up with the actress about the film.
How did ‘Bhaag Johnny’ come about?
Vikram Bhatt called me one day and asked to come for a story he had in mind. It was really different and engaging, it kept me and my mother at the edge throughout and was something I had not heard off in recent times. I said yes in an instant. Then he made me meet Shivam Nair, the director. He had a few meetings with me to know whether I suit the character and eventually we started shooting.
Did you always want to get back into films after your stint in theatre?
The effort was never to move away from films and come back again. I was focusing in films only but the right script just took time to come. In the meantime theater happened by chance. Ali Fazal, my co-actor in my debut film used to do a lot of plays and he advised me to explore the same. Despite being hesitant initially, I took it up and am glad I did. My stint with theater has improved me as an artist and given me the confidence to pull off diverse roles.
What appealed to you about ‘Bhaag Johnny’?
The story was the decisive factor. As I mentioned earlier, I was bowled over by the script and the way it was executed. Also the character of Taniya, a simple and independent girl around whom the narrative is built up intrigued me. And it was an action thriller, a genre completely different from my previous film so I came on board instantly.
What was it like working with Kunal Khemu?
Working with him is like work and play at the same time. Kunal Khemu has an inimitable wit that would keep us on our toes. But once the camera is on, he is a different individual. His ability to get into and out of the character in an instant is admirable. Kunal comes with years of experience having worked with seniors actors and that shows in his portrayals.
What would you like the audiences to take away from the film?
Like every other actor, I would also want my film to entertain the masses. Bhaag Johnny is a mainstream film with all the elements of a thriller in place. It has great music as well coupled with good performances. So I would wish that all our efforts deliver and people have as much fun watching the film as we had while making it.
What has the film taught you that perhaps you hadn’t learnt about filmmaking in ‘Always Kabhi Kabhi’?
Every film is a lesson it itself and it adds to the experience. During Always Kabhi Kabhi I was really young and had a lot to learn about acting. Now after my stint with theatre, I feel I am much more connected to the art and to its finer nuances. Stage has given me that confidence to perform to my fullest.
What can we expect from you in the future?
More films for sure. As of now we are taking our play Tajmahal Ka Udghatan to Dubai right after the release. I am really looking forward to the audiences�۪ reaction there as we had a great feedback in India.
Is there a film you’ve seen recently that you wish you could’ve been a part of?
I would have loved to be a part of Ram Leela. Playing that traditional Indian girl amidst all that dance, celebration and emotion is what I thrive on.
In the film your character is on the run. What do you always find yourself running from in real life?
In real life, I am always running from food. Quite strangely I can handle all the big problems and major issues in life but when it comes to trivial things like controlling my food habits, it becomes an issue. It�۪s emotional eating most of the times rather than actual hunger and that�۪s what I am always running from.
BizAsia thanks Zoa Morani for taking the time to speak with us. ‘Bhaag Johnny’ is scheduled to hit cinemas on 25th September.