Smart moves: How Dumb And Dum­ber movie sparked a change of di­rec­tion.

Matt Earle (above left, pic­tured with friend Josh Hall) re­veals how the Dumb And Dum­ber movie led to a new ca­reer in en­ter­tain­ment. Cass Mar­rett re­ports.

The TV Guide - - CONTENTS -

Matt Earle has built a ca­reer around plan­ning ahead but he didn’t bar­gain for the di­rec­tion his life is tak­ing.

Earle, who has mas­ters de­gree in re­source man­age­ment, was work­ing a nine-to-five of­fice job in plan­ning when he had a ca­reer-defin­ing mo­ment.

“You know when you can see the next 10 years, and I had work­mates about 10 years older than me, and I was just like, ‘ **** , I don’t want to do that’ like that’s the path I’m head­ing down.

“I re­mem­ber I was read­ing scripts of Dumb And Dum­ber at my desk and I was just like, ‘I shouldn’t be do­ing this at work’.

“So I did a quick film course. I was just like, ‘I just need to make some­thing just to get it out of my sys­tem’.”

That ‘some­thing’ in­volved a niche movie.

“I went to the Marl­bor­ough Sounds for four weeks in com­plete iso­la­tion and made a cast­away film about a man who wears a stingray for a hat,” he says in a blog.

“In hind­sight, I think that I may have gone slightly in­sane dur­ing this pe­riod. But that was a good thing. It was a turn­ing point for me into find­ing some­thing that I was pas­sion­ate about – com­edy and sto­ry­telling.”

Link­ing up with Josh Hall, who he met at Otago Univer­sity nearly 15 years ago, the pair made Blade NZ, a TVNZ OnDe­mand

“In hind­sight, I think that I may have gone slightly in­sane dur­ing this pe­riod. But that was a good thing. It was a turn­ing point for me.” – Matt Earle

se­ries that has been sold to 74 coun­tries and trans­lated into 22 dif­fer­ent lan­guages.

“That sparked our love for travel and com­edy in New Zealand and we just felt like we could do it a lot big­ger,” says Earle.

So they bought the cheap­est van they could find, added a cam­era­man and let rip on the South Is­land, cre­at­ing a new se­ries aptly named Mis­ad­ven­tures.

“I think over­all the show is kind of a cel­e­bra­tion of New Zealand and the lo­cal peo­ple that we try to meet,” says Earle.

“It’s fo­cus­ing on nat­u­ral in­ter­ac­tions with peo­ple and real-life mo­ments on the road so that’s all part of the au­then­tic feel that we’re try­ing to por­tray.”

And it doesn’t get more au­then­tic than a chilly bin omelette.

“We had eggs in the chilly bin, you know, but they all got cracked,” says Earle.

“But we just poured them out of the chilly bin into the fry­pan and made an omelette, which was ac­tu­ally, like, quite dis­gust­ing in hind­sight but that’s kind of an ex­am­ple of what we would do.”

Most of the time, the pair were treated to meals by the peo­ple they met. How­ever, one en­counter, Earle says, stressed out his par­ents a lit­tle.

“We tried some of New Zealand’s hottest chilli sauce, and it was the cra­zi­est thing ever, and my par­ents saw the video of us do­ing that be­cause we did a Face­book live stream and they were a bit con­cerned. But, nah, they love it.”

And while the road was long and the an­tics were many, there was one thing Earle and Hall knew they could al­ways count on.

“We’re kind of just re­ally dumb ver­sions of our­selves, but it’s so con­sis­tent that it’s kind of be­come scary.”

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