He's already come a long way from the basement of the damned in The IT Crowd and now Chris O'Dowd is set to make his stage debut on Broadway with Hollywood heartthrob James Franco.

O'Dowd will play Lennie, a ranch hand with learning difficulties, in an adaptation of John Steinbeck's novello Of Mice and Men opposite Franco who is also making his Broadway debut as his friend George Milton.

The Roscommon-born actor has made huge inroads into Hollywood with his role in Bridesmaids and he was last seen on stage in 2008, when he made his West End debut opposite Catherine Tate.

Before that, he appeared in Druid theatre productions here in Ireland.