Question Time: Chris O’Dowd

Click to follow
The Independent Culture

Life: Grew up in Boyle in Ireland. Currently lives in Chalk Farm, north London

Work: Comic and actor Chris O’Dowd, 29, played Roy in ‘The IT Crowd’ and stars in new comedy ‘FM’, which starts on Wednesday, 10.30pm on ITV2

Balance: Flower-arranging

What is the format of ‘FM’?

My character has his own show on an independent music radio station. We have a different musical act on every week, including The Charlatans and The Guillemots, and a lot of very interesting special guests coming in. Tim Westwood sticks out in my mind. He is mad as a bag of snakes.

W hat inspired you to work in television?

I loved all that Saturday Night Live early stuff – Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi et al. When I was at college, I started doing plays with the drama society and realised that it was something I was interested in.

What was your first break?

I’d started skipping classes at drama school and had been sent up to the principal’s office. While I was waiting, a fax came through from a casting director looking for young Irish actors. I nicked the fax, called and ended up booking the job.

Are there any jobs you’d rather forget about?

An advert for Pizza Hut. I had just one line, but I’d been on the piss the previous night and I needed 43 takes at it.

What do you watch when you’re not working?

I’m a big fan of The Wire and Mad Men.

What are the funniest shows out at the moment?

Summer Heights High and Peep Show.

With whom would you most like to work?

Judd Apatow. Philip Seymour Hoffman was great fun to work with. We spent a month on a boat together for my new film, The Boat that Rocked.

Do you have a dream job?

I wanted to be a speech-writer when I was a teenager.

What are your desert-island media?

I love Rhod Sharp, the guy that comes on at 1am for Up All Night on Radio Five Live, The Onion and Larry Sanders.