The indigenous American Indian genealogy of Billy Mills (Robby Benson) was half-white / half-Sioux Indian. The latter is also known as Oglala Sioux or Oglala Lakota and they are one of the seven Lakota people sub-tribes.
Some movie posters for the film featured preambles that read: (1) "On October 14, 1964, Billy Mills stunned the world by running the most sensational race in Olympic history. But it wasn't how he finished, it was where he started that made him a champion" and (2) "This is the true story of a man's personal triumph. Over prejudice, pain and himself. Billy Mills, a North American Indian brought up on the reservation, destined against all odds to become the best distance runner in the world".
The name of the running race that as a student Billy Mills (Robby Benson) won as a junior was the "Custer County High School Cross Country Championship". The name of the college campus that Mills later went to as a youth was the University of Kansas.
Though first launched in very late 1983 in such North American territories as the USA and Canada, the picture was though predominantly released around the world in 1984, which was the 20th Anniversary year of Billy Mills (Robby Benson)'s victory winning the 10,000 km Gold Medal at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
The film's closing epilogue states: "Billy Mills is now a successful business executive living in Sacramento, California with his wife Pat and their three daughters. He devotes much of his time working with native American youth to help them realize their goals". The organization billed in the closing credits that performed this function was the "Billy Mills Indian Youth Leadership Program". Moreover, Mills has since written a book called "Wokini: A Lakota Journey to Happiness & Self-Understanding" (1999).