Tupac Shakur was originally cast to play Sharif, but was fired which led to a physical fight with Allen Hughes. Shakur was charged with assault and battery. Shakur bragged about the altercation on an appearance on Yo! MTV Raps (1988). A tape of the appearance was played at the trial as evidence against Shakur. Shakur was sentenced to fifteen days in jail.
Larenz Tate grew up on Chicago's Westside, which is controlled by the Vice Lords street gang. At the scene where he enters Cain's grandparents home, he subtly throws up the "5" when shaking Cain's hand.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
A clip in the theatrical trailer, features Stacy and Ronnie talking to either the police or a paramedic. This takes place presumably after Sharif and Caine are killed in the drive-by at the film's end. Anthony is seen crying with his clothes stained in Caine's blood.
In the empty classroom scene, Mr. Butler tells Kaine and Sharif "Being a black man in America isn't easy. The hunt is on, and you're the prey. All I'm saying is... All I'm saying is... Survive! All right?" Mr. Butler is played by Charles S. Dutton, who later starred in Surviving The Game (1994), about a group of men who pick up and hunt down a black man in the woods.