Originally, the role played by Wesley Snipes was offered to Sylvester Stallone but Stallone turned it down. However, just for fun, the script writer named one of the major characters, "Sly", short for Sylvester and a nickname for Stallone.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
The captain of the flight (who is killed by Rane during the takeover) is played by the actual chief pilot for Rich International Airlines, the airline which provided the aircraft used for exterior shots.
Partially filmed in Central Florida, Wesley Snipes spoke at his former Orlando high school (Jones High) offering paid roles as extras to students with high grade point averages. The students that met this requirement were placed on a list and randomly selected from that list and can be seen portraying attendees in a carnival scene as the John Cutter character searches the crowd in pursuit of the terrorists.