Samuel L. Jackson had just undergone treatment for drug addiction and had only two weeks from his discharge from rehab to the start of filming. Jackson has gone on record as saying that Gator's ravaged look was not make-up, but actually the result of Jackson's own detoxification.
During a scuffle in Paulie's store, a man can be seen reading a newspaper with a front headline that reads "Doin' The Right Thing." Most likely this is a reference to one of Spike Lee's earlier films, Do the Right Thing (1989).
When Angie is cooking dinner for her father and brothers, she is seen wearing a Kearney Tigers sweatshirt. The Kearney Tigers are a basketball team belonging to a popular all girls high school in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn.
A homeless man picking up Gator's belongings while his wife throws them out of the window. This cameo role also serves as another reference to 'Do the Right Thing (1989)' as the homeless man is in fact the very same Buggin' Out character that protested Sal's lack of African-Americans on his wall of fame.