Fanshawe members' film to make its debut at TIFF

The Gold Fish Bowl is a film created by Fanshawe faculty and members including Ed Matthews, Meg Howald, Richard Moule and Darr Sands. The film was selected to be screened at the Toronto Independent Film Festival on Sept.8.

Fanshawe professor Meg Howald, will see her first full feature length film debut at the Toronto Independent Film Festival (TIFF) on Sept. 8.

The film titled The Gold Fish Bowl was written, directed and produced by Howald and based off of a true life encounter she heard of. The Gold Fish Bowl is centered on a woman named Mara Winters, who at one point attacks and tries to kill her abusive husband.

The film, which was shot in London starting in mid-2016, takes the viewer into a world that explores why this attack happens and Winters finding help and light to her once troubled life.

There's a strong focus on freedom and the idea that Winters may be living in her own world (the fish bowl), she's learning to live a much more positive life as the film moves along.

Howald, a novelist who teaches business communications and is part of the creative writing program and the School of Language and Liberal Studies at Fanshawe.

She worked on the film with a number of Fanshawe members, alumni and the London community, including Ed Matthews also in the writing communications department at Fanshawe, Richard Moule who teaches both writing and communications as well as music history at Fanshawe and Darr Sands, a recent graduate, both from Fanshawe where he studied general arts and science, along with advance filmmaking, and at Western where he took film studies.

Both Matthews and Moule worked as co-sound designers, supervisors and composers of the film, while Sands was an assistant editor for it.

There's a central theme of sympathy throughout the film, with Moule saying the feeling a viewer may have for one character might change during the film.

“This is a movie about grey areas, and I think that's what makes the movie so evocative. It is very mysterious in terms of even the way roles shift,” Moule said. [Sympathy] and ambiguity I think helps lead the viewer on, keeps the viewer interested in exploring the nature of the characters.”

Along with the four members, the team also worked with a few other members, but overall it's a small team, which worked quite well.

The four of them spoke highly of one another and the work they did to create powerful and interesting film. They've even continued to work together after creating The Gold Fish Bowl, by producing and adapting other films as well.

According to Howald, her “wonderful” team plans to stick together and hopefully get some funding so they can continue creating more in the future.

Though there were some ups and downs while putting the film together, as well as a funny moment when a nearby neighbor didn't realize filming was taking place and called the police for the “disturbance”.

Howald also hopes to have the film featured in the upcoming Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.

The fact that it got chosen for TIFF was exciting for the team because it allows not only for a public screening of the film, but it also allows Howald and her team to get well deserved exposure and credibility.

The team is thankful the film was selected for TIFF, and were quick to point out that if an individual has a passion, they should go for it and not give up, because you never know what can happen.

Howald expressed her thoughts when she heard about the film being selected for TIFF.

“I cried and then I didn't believe it was my film and I thought do I tell anybody and just get it over with I have to tell everybody,” Howald said. “I'm looking forward to [TIFF], I'm very excited for all these people who worked so hard and they shine in it, they really do.”

The Gold Fish Bowl will be screened on Sept. 8 at 9 p.m. at the Carlton Cinema in downtown Toronto.

For more information about the film or the crew, please visit

The Gold Fish Bowl