Our Story

It was the summer of 2016. The UK was gripped by the EU referendum, Donald Trump was running for the White House and in a small cafe in Exeter, Benjie Croce was ordering a coffee. For over a decade Benjie had been living in Bristol and working as freelance cinematographer – a job that had taken him all over the world shooting documentaries. What he didn’t know was that standing beside him at the counter was another filmmaker, Guy Natanel, a fellow freelancer who had also recently settled in Exeter after years of living in London and making award winning documentaries across the globe.

The two of them got talking and decided there and then that they should collaborate on something. Between freelance jobs they began meeting and shooting. It wasn’t long before they had a small collection of film ideas in various stages of development.

Chris Jones was another filmmaker who had ended up in Exeter after years of living in London. Working mainly as a cinematographer on all sorts of genres, he began moving into directing and developing his interest in documentaries. He was introduced to Benjie and Guy and soon the three of them were meeting whenever they could. There was no shortage of creativity so the guiding question was “what can we do together that we can’t do apart?” Finally, they agreed to take the leap, to hang up their freelancing spurs and set up a production company.

BUT the three of them soon realised they needed someone else. A fourth musketeer. Someone who could channel their wayward creative energy and corral it into something productive. After a lot of searching they were lucky to find Ali Pym, recently returned to the UK after years of teaching film and adventuring in Hong Kong. She joined the team and Preston Street Films was born.

Within months of forming, Preston Street Films had completed their first film – the documentary This is Phonic. The team has a long slate of projects in development and in production, but they’re always on the lookout for more…

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