VIDEO: Actor spends night on streets as part of Sheffield shot film to highlight issue of homelessness
The lead actor behind a new film about a man's descent into life on the streets hopes the movie will shine a light on the problem of homelessness.
Tears in the Dust follows lead character Trevor Wallis as his life descends into chaos and ultimately homelessness after losing his job as a salesman.
The 90-minute movie was filmed in various locations in and around South Yorkshire and lead actor Dean Sills turned to method acting as he prepared for the role by sleeping rough for a night.
The 49-year-old and the film's director Steve Call spent a night out in the cold in Leeds last year with homeless charity Simon on the Streets.
Dean, who is from Bolton upon Dearne in Barnsley, said he hopes the film will raise awareness of how people from all walks of life who fall on hard times can find themselves on the streets.
He said: "The character Trevor is owed money and things don't turn out too well. He goes on a depressing journey where he loses his job, his wife and his dignity.
"He is down and out and on the streets, constantly drunk and things are about to get a lot worse. Through the film we show how quickly this can happen.
"The tagline of the film is 'Homelessness Can Happen To Anyone' and it can."
He added that his first-hand experience of sleeping rough for a night brought home to him the human stories behind the figures many of us walk past on the streets.
Said Dean: "Homeless people are often stereotyped as violent drug users or alcoholics. But most of the time they only turn to drugs and drink to help them forget how hard life is on the streets.
"As a society we look down on those who have nothing. Instead of shaming those on the streets, we should be trying to understand why people are homeless and help them get out of this nightmare."
He believes homelessness has become a rising problem in recent years in which society has been hit with austerity measures and called on the Government to do more to support people who fall on hard times to help them get back into employment.
Said Dean: "All the homeless charities are run by people who have been there on the streets living a life of hell and the Government doesn't have a clue.
"People who are homeless are just like you and I but they have just been dealt a bad hand in life giving them loss of self-esteem, self-confidence and sense of security."
Scenes were shot at St Paul's Tower in Sheffield, the Collingwood Hotel in Bolton upon Dearne, in Bradford and Shipley, West Yorkshire, and Buxton, Derbyshire. Entertainer Billy Pearce also makes a cameo appearance.
The film will be shown at the Cosy Cinema, a regular movie screening night at The Concertina Club in Mexborough on Sunday, May 20, at 7.30pm.
Entrance fee is Â£3 for adults and Â£1.50 for concessions.
ll proceeds will be donated to the homelessness charity Hidden Voices.
The film has also been released on DVD and is available to view online via Amazon Video.