Chris O'Dowd: The IT man groomed for stardom

 

Charlotte Cripps
Friday 20 January 2012 01:00
Comments

Bridesmaids star Chris O'Dowd, 32, who played a love-struck cop in the 2011 box-office hit, is now one of Hollywood's leading men. But he has also just been nominated for Bafta's Orange Wednesdays Rising Star Award. "The way my career is going is terrific – but it was somewhat unexpected," says O'Dowd. "This nomination just makes me feel really young."

O'Dowd stars in another Judd Apatow film later this year, This Is 40, a spin-off from Apatow's 2007 rom-com, Knocked Up. "I play a pretentious guy in the music industry, who thinks everything is terrible because he can't get laid." He also appears in Friends with Kids, out in March, with many of the Bridesmaids cast, including Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph and Jon Hamm, about friends in their early thirties having kids. "We get on really well with similar sensibilities – so it flows easily."

He is currently on the set of his self-penned TV show Moone Boy (to screen on Sky TV in June), which is based on him growing up in Ireland as a 12-year-old. "We only started shooting it last week. We are filming in my hometown Boyle, Country Roscommon, in the house I grew up in, which is very surreal," he says. "I play a boring man in his mid-thirties, my imaginary friend as a young boy. While Steve Coogan plays a local millionaire who owns a fish factory and helps a female president get elected."

How has life changed for the Irish actor since he first made waves in Channel 4's cult comedy series The IT Crowd in 2006? "I'm on a lot of people's Facebook pages these days so I have inseminated the modern oeuvre," he says. "Film-makers and producers have a little more faith in me which is helpful, especially if you want money for TV shows."

O'Dowd's past film credits include Gulliver's Travels, Dinner for Schmucks and Festival. Recently, he appeared alongside Romola Garai in the BBC's The Crimson Petal and the White.

But it wasn't that long ago that O'Dowd was auditioning for Bridesmaids. "It feels old-school but you have to sign a board outside the room where you audition," he recalls. "I came in and felt pretty confident. Then I saw a bunch of names – all these top A-list Hollywood actors – up for the same role. I almost left; I thought, 'What's the point?'." Luckily, he stayed.

The Orange Wednesday Rising Star Award nominees are Chris O'Dowd, Adam Deacon, Chris Hemsworth, Eddie Redmayne and Tom Hiddleston. To vote for the winner go to www.orange.co.uk/bafta

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in