Chris O’Dowd will shortly decamp to New York to begin serious rehearsals for his Broadway debut in Of Mice and Men with James Franco. Tickets for the show are on sale now; the limited engagement begins on March 19 and will run through July 27.

O’Dowd stars as Lennie, the childlike gentle giant so beloved in the classic novel. O’Dowd, 6’4”, was a large kid growing up in Co. Roscommon, and he’s looking forward to the high-profile role.

“I’ve a few people I might base [Lennie] on,” he recently told The Independent in the U.K. “It’s a massive challenge to play someone mentally disabled. I’m going to have to just let it develop.”