But then "I started calling. The director of Sabena in Brussels, he called the king of Belgium, the president of France, to weigh in."
Rusesabagina said he then went to see the assistant general chief of staff for the police to get him to prevent the killing that might be coming. Rusesabagina "prodded him into coming with me to the hotel, telling him I had things he needed in the safe there."
Actor Don Cheadle, right, talks with Paul Rusesabagina, whom he portrays in the film "Hotel Rwanda," a story of heroism during the 1994 genocide.
(Frank Connor -- United Artists)
Rusesabagina had stockpiled everything he could: money, gold, Cohiba cigars, aged bottles of wine.
When the official resisted the offer, Rusesabagina warned him that one day he would be held accountable and that the rest of the world would judge him as the man who ordered the killing but could have stopped it.
At the hotel, men, women and children were kneeling next to the pool with their hands held up, waiting for death. Rusesabagina's wife and four children were hiding in the bathroom behind a shower curtain.
The official rushed to the hotel and evicted his men from the grounds.
Eventually, Rusesabagina, his family and two nieces whose parents had been killed were evacuated by the United Nations to a camp in Tanzania. Today, Rusesabagina lives in Brussels.
The film is an homage to Rusesabagina's silent bravery and suppressed rage.
"I hope this will be a wake-up call, not only for Rwanda but the whole international community," he said. "I acted with the hope that all my friends were doing the same instead of blindly falling into step with the rest of the mob."