A film graduate from Ealing has seen his first self-made film gross over $100,000 in worldwide sales since leaving London’s MetFilm school in 2014.

Charlie Steeds, 27, used savings from a post graduate job in Bristol to amount his £2,000 budget for the film originally called ‘Labyrinthia’, which was eventually retitled ‘Deadman Apocalypse’ for the US market and released in 2016.

The film, set in an action and fantasy setting, saw a team of military operators descend into the dark world of ‘Labyrinthia’ to save the dying earth from an apocalypse, and distanced Steeds from his passion and favoured genre of horror which he has since returned to.

Steeds said: “I have always been particularly drawn to dark and scary stuff, even as a kid I was always telling ghostly stories to my friends. It’s the reaction from people that I love more than anything, each can be so different.”

As well as setting up an IMDb account and making a trailer for his debut film ‘Deadman Apocalypse’, he sent some information off to a film magazine which committed a five-page feature to it, and it was not long before an American distributor got in touch wanting to pick up the sales rights.

Ealing Times: Global success: ‘Deadman Apocalypse’ proved to be a big hit in the USAGlobal success: ‘Deadman Apocalypse’ proved to be a big hit in the USA

An additional 20 minutes was shot for the film as well as its name being changed to ‘Deadman Apocalypse’, changes Steed felt contributed heavily to its success in America.

Steeds has stressed how support from his mother has played a vital role in the success he has built for himself so far in the film industry.

Speaking to the London’s MetFilm school he said: “My mum has been incredibly supportive, as a child whenever I needed a camera, or equipment she made sure I got what I needed. She sacrificed a lot to send me to film school.

“I was delighted when she agreed to play a small part in one of my films, it’s a cameo in ‘The House of Violent Desires’, she plays a maid-slashed to ribbons with a razor and dies with a pool of blood on the floor.”

Since the film’s success, distributors have approached Steeds with offers of significantly higher budgets for more action and sci-fi led films, however he has stayed loyal to his passion for horror, and his latest release ‘A Werewolf in England’ reached number three in the UK DVD charts and remains in the top 100 six weeks later.

Steeds who is now back living in Ealing, is enjoying his current work making two films a year for the straight to DVD and digital download market, where his films can be found in HMV, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, ASDA as well as on Sky, Apple and Amazon.

Ealing Times: Steeds in action: Steeds on the set of ‘The Barge People’ which is already out in the USA and is coming to the UK next year Steeds in action: Steeds on the set of ‘The Barge People’ which is already out in the USA and is coming to the UK next year 

The considerable success Steeds has experienced so far has, however come with its setbacks .

‘The House of Violent Desire’ was made by Steeds on the back of the success ‘Deadman Apocalypse’ received, however his exploration of LGBT themes and a black female lead, as well as the two hour length of the film were all things the sale agent at the time wanted to avoid or cut from the movie.

Staying loyal to his work and representation of those often disregarded or not equally portrayed in films, Steeds avoided making the advised changes which led to sales indeed taking a significant hit.

The setback however did not deter Steeds from developing main roles for black characters, and the USA have just bought the sales right for ‘Death Ranch’ which viewers can expect to see in April 2021 where three black actors are the lead protagonists battling KKK cannibals.

Visit Amazon Prime to check out Mr Steed’s ‘Deadman Apocalypse’ as well as his 2020 release ‘A Werewolf in England’, and watch out for next year’s release of ‘Death Ranch’.