Originally Roland Sharp (Tommy Lee Jones) was to be a FBI agent working in Virginia, but upon receiving the script, Jones suggested that Texas (his home state) would be a great location for the film. After the producers arrived they decided to shoot the movie there, and as a consequence, made the main character a Texas Ranger.
The Hex is an actual University of Texas tradition, enacted before the annual Thanksgiving game against Texas A&M University. The Texas A&M Aggies had their own pre-game tradition, the Bonfire, but after a combination of factors caused a collapse in 1999 and killed 12 students, the tradition is no longer university-sponsored, it is however, still organized by the student body and done off-campus.
Is the first movie to have the permission from the University to use well-known UT symbols including: the UT tower (lit in orange and white - traditional lighting when a football game is won), Bevo (the longhorn mascot), UT cheerleaders, UT band, UT spirit organizations, and the UT Texas Exes.
The finale of the movie is supposed to take place at the Eagle Pass crossing. In actuality, the crossing between Eagle Pass and Piedras Negras is in the middle of town, crossing a bridge that spans the Rio Grand. The "Border Crossing" the characters approach in no way resembles the real Eagle Pass crossing.