The Walt Disney Co. has defended its decision in Glory Road to depict the East Texas State University (now Texas A&M University-Commerce) basketball team as a group of racists, taunting the Texas Western Miners team, the first to start five black players in the NCAA championships. Texas A&M University-Commerce President Keith D. McFarland on Wednesday disclosed the contents of a reply he had received from Disney Studios Chairman Richard Cook, denying that any members of the team engaged in racial epithets against the Miners during a regular-season game as the movie alleged. In the letter, Cook observed that "Glory Road is not a documentary," and that it was necessary for the screenwriters to "consolidate events." He said it was not the intention of the filmmakers "to unfairly depict any particular group, individuals, community, or institution." In a statement, McFarland said, "Our institution and community were specifically singled out in a very negative way in the movie; therefore, to maintain the filmmakers had no intention of unfairly depicting any particular group or institution seems to be a contradiction in what the filmmakers actually did."
The '12 Years A Slave' director will receive the accolade at the London Film Festival in October.
Critics from all over the world were asked to name the best movie of the past 16 years.