SALVAGED LIVES follows a training project set up by the Chino State Prison in California. Forty-five inmates start a tough deep-sea diving course. In the end, thirteen men are left. The film accompanies four of them during exhausting training sessions, which have names like 'Hell Week'. The four men, who eventually qualify as deep-sea divers, are also followed in their new lives outside the penitentiary. The film reports on their tragedies and their victories. All four of them are driven by the same motivation: to give new sense and meaning to their lives. Director Barbara Leibovitz (photographer Annie's sister) is her own producer. She mastered the documentary trade as a reporter for the CBS news programme '48 hours', for which she covered social items.