As a native Montrealer, I’m thrilled Priyanka Chopra is in town, but I’m also a little worried about the 16-hour workdays she’s pulling down. The megastar is here shooting ABC's new action-drama series Quantico, which also happens to be Chopra’s first starring U.S. role. It’s a classic whodunit with a sexy national-security twist, and her character, butt-kicking FBI trainee Alex Parrish, is caught in the middle.

When I got on the phone with Chopra, she was in-between takes on set. The day before that she was in Zurich and two days prior she was in Mumbai working on a movie. Despite the exhausting schedule, the 33-year-old assured me that it is on par for her line of work. “I’m usually not static for very long,” said the actress and former Miss World in 2000.

It turns out that Priyanka has been bouncing around her whole life, and even moved from her native country India to the United States, mostly because she didn’t care much for Indian school uniforms. It’s her spirit of nonconformity—instilled by her parents—that helped her make the shift from pageant winner to actress, without being pigeonholed. “There was a big thing many years ago when I joined the movies that said models can’t act,” she said. “But I think I’ve done alright.”

Chopra is set to take North America by storm with the action-packed television series Quantico. Alex Parrish is the sort of no-nonsense protagonist who does her best work when bullets are ringing past her. It makes sense, then, that Chopra’s favorite characters are a couple of superhuman antiheroes in Jack Bauer and Jason Bourne. Here’s the rest of my conversation with the super-chill Chopra.