"What happened in Sarajevo...it can happen in the middle of Paris. In Rome. It's possible."
-Vedran Smailovic, The Cellist of Sarajevo

What happens when a modern society implodes?

Imagine waking up to find society collapsed: stores shuttered, electricity and water shut off, no food or medicine, neighbors become enemies and fighting in the streets.

That's what happened in the city of Sarajevo, only eight years after hosting the 1984 Winter Olympic games.

These are stories of Sarajevo: a surgeon turned psychiatrist to understand and heal his PTSD; a tuxedo-clad cellist playing for the dead at massacre sites; a young woman immortalized in a photograph as she flees a sniper's bullet; and children struggling to survive in an orphanage near the frontline.

When Josip Broz, aka Tito, the benevolent dictator of the federation of Yugoslavia, died on May 4, 1980, nobody had an inkling of the bloodshed and ruin to come. In early 1992, a referendum on independence took Bosnia down the path to war.

The film has been produced by filmmaker and photographer Roger M. Richards over a span of twenty-four years, from the war's first shots as the city of Sarajevo was besieged in 1992, through the twentieth anniversary of the signing of the Dayton Accords that ended the fighting and now to present day Bosnia.

During the siege of Sarajevo, hundreds of thousands of artillery, mortar and tank shells were fired into the city from the surrounding hills. As each exploded, it left a crater in concrete resembling a flower. Citizens stoically painted these "pavement petals" red and called them 'Sarajevo roses'.

Some remain today, fading reminders of innocent blood that was spilled on these streets, in this once all-embracing city, which just 8 years before the war was host of the 1984 Winter Olympic Games. The Sarajevo 'rose' represents the impact of the war on the lives of these individuals and all citizens of Sarajevo.


Roger M. Richards - Director-Producer-Writer-Cinematographer-Editor.
Oggi Tomić - Executive Producer and 2nd Unit Cinematographer.
Peggy J. Meder - Executive Producer.
Neil McCartney - Executive Producer.
Mitty Griffis Mirrer - Co-Executive Producer and Writer.
Zana Marjanović - Co-Director and Co-Producer.
Harry J. Brown, Robert F. Wright, Emir Kapetanović and Harun Mehmedinović - Associate Producers.

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