Curious – 20 Years into the Future

Curious – 20 Years into the Future

As a production company, Curious has always set itself up to move ahead of the cultural curve, making business calls for moral and philosophical reasons from day one.


When Matt Noonan set up Curious in 1999, the climate emergency was a far-off, fringe thing. Few were thinking about where the unit coffee came from, whether it was fair trade, let alone what vessels it should be served in. It wasn’t totally out of the ordinary for a few vegans to be on set, however “us freaks kept mainly to ourselves”, Matt laughs.

Equally rare at the time was concern for the impact a shoot might have on a far-flung location, so long as you could get away with it. Clients certainly weren’t in the habit of considering their C02 emissions; the only air miles most cared about were the ones on their frequent flier cards.

But, as Matt explains, “Curious has always been a bit different like that”.

One of the first companies, production or agency to start recycling paper, Curious was first to go to paper-free production meetings, and then became the first to be officially certified Carbon Neutral in 2009.

“This sort of forward-thinking has defined the Curious culture and attracted a more enlightened kind of director, crew and client, too. I think we’ve always appealed to a more progressive client,” Noonan says.

“These days though, the things that have always mattered to us aren’t fringe, they’re policy in the boardrooms of global corporations and they inform all sorts of decisions brands make – including where to invest their production dollars. And it makes sense. If you’re going to come all the way to NZ for our awesome locations, you want to be able to say that the production was carbon-neutral, with zero ecological impact, at the least. Maybe even left the world better than it was”

Noonan says the ambition when working with private landowners, Department of Conservation, New Zealand Transport Agency, and Local Māori Iwi is that when Curious wraps a shoot, they and the next crew are welcomed back. “It’s the shared responsibility of guardianship of the land for future generations, in Te reo Māori it’s called Kaitiaki.” Continue reading on LBB…