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Award-Winning Documentary "A New Home" Shares STL Bosnian Community with the World via Amazon
By: A New Home
The latest collaboration from Director/Producer Joseph Puleo and Executive Producer Rio Vitale, debuted this past summer where the filmmaking team once again achieved unprecedented success. Their showing was the most attended film as part of the St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase and took home both Best Documentary & Best Sound (Documentary)
In a follow up to America's Last Little Italy: The Hill, the duos new film examines the story of Bosnian War refugees fleeing to St. Louis, Missouri, 30 years ago. As the war in Ukraine continues to rage and thousands of its citizens are displaced and seeking new homes, the plight of the Bosnians remains as relevant as ever.
When Bosnians fled their homes to escape the war in 1992, many ended up in St. Louis, largely because of its affordable housing and available jobs. The new arrivals began assimilating, starting their own businesses and transforming a once dilapidated South City neighborhood in the shadow of the Bevo Mill into a thriving "Little Bosnia." Over the ensuing three decades, an estimated 70,000 Bosnians have migrated to St. Louis, making it the most inhabited area for Bosnians outside of Bosnia itself. A New Home tells the story of these refugees' perseverance and determination to not only start life over but prosper.
Pre-production on A New Home began in the spring of 2021 with hours of VHS footage and more than a thousand photographs generously donated to the project to utilize during the editing process. The film also includes interviews with luminaries including Patrick McCarthy, author of After the Fall: Srebrenica Survivors in St. Louis; Ben Moore, Senior Researcher at the Center for Bosnian Studies; Anna Crosslin, past president of the International Institute of St. Louis; former Mayor of St. Louis Francis Slay; former Missouri congressman Russ Carnahan; and Doug Moore, a former journalist at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, as well as 5 Bosnian War survivors and refugees.
"This documentary was a complete labor of love," said Puleo. "To be trusted with telling the harrowing and triumphant story of the Bosnians in St. Louis was not a responsibility that I took lightly and their courageous resolve inspired me to give this film all I could give. The audience response so far has been overwhelmingly positive and we cannot wait for more people to get the opportunity to see A New Home through Amazon's portal."
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