* DawsonCasting: Even though he played a 17-year-old, Cuba Gooding Jr. was 23 at the time.
* EnforcedMethodActing: Singleton didn't tell the cast when gunshots would be fired, to ensure that the actors' reactions to the sound of gunfire would be authentic.
* RealitySubtext: The movie was shot on-location in South Central L.A., which led to a lot of problems similar to the fictional ones in the movie. The dialogue had to be dubbed over in many parts due to gunshots and helicopters in the distance. There were threats of fights between the extras, and in one instance a filming location had to be changed because of threats from a member of the Bloods. The scene in question contained Doughboy, who is heavily implied to be a Crip, shooting someone who is heavily implied to be a Blood. The real life gang member claimed that he was not responsible if someone actually shot Ice Cube for portraying their gang negatively.
* SleeperHit: No one, not even the people at Columbia (where it was seen as a small indie-type film with no big stars), expected the film to make the impact that it did. Even facing ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'', ''Film/RobinHoodPrinceOfThieves'' and Creator/SpikeLee's ''Film/JungleFever'', the film grossed over $50 million and got John Singleton two AcademyAward nominations.
* StarMakingRole: For Ice Cube (as an actor) and Cuba Gooding Jr. as well as director John Singleton.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: According to John Singleton, Ice Cube's fellow Music/{{NWA}} members were to play Doughboy's friends. However, the tension that resulted from Ice Cube leaving [=NWA=] kept that from happening.
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