*** #40, "Fight The Power"
** AFIS100Years100Movies10ThAnniversaryEdition: #96
* CastingGag: Buggin' Out, who says Sal is racist for not putting any black people on his Italian-American exclusive "Wall of Fame" is played by Creator/GiancarloEsposito, who is himself half-black, half-Italian American.
* DoingItForTheArt: Creator/SpikeLee funded the entire film himself by maxing out his credit cards, surely as a way to maintain creative control over a film with such a personal, controversial subject.
* PlayingAgainstType: John Turturro (an Italian-American), actually playing... an Italian![[note]]He's frequently cast as [[FakeNationality Latinos]][[/note]]
** Who knew [[Series/BreakingBad Gus]] could be such a loudmouth?
* RealLifeRelative: Mookie's sister Jade is played by Creator/SpikeLee's real-life sister Joie.
** Rick Aiello, who played Officer Long, is the real life son of Danny Aiello, who played Sal in the film.
** Ossie Davis and wife Ruby Dee, as Da Mayor and Mother Sister.
* RippedFromTheHeadlines: This film was inspired by an actual incident in New York where some black youths were chased out of a pizzeria by some white youths in a section of New York known as Howard Beach.
* ThrowItIn: The key scene when Danny Aiello and John Turturro talk alone approximately midway through the film was partly improvised. The scripted scene ended as the character Smiley approached the window. Everything after that until the end of the scene was completely ad-libbed.
** All of the scenes of the corner men were improvised.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen: Creator/SpikeLee's first choice for Sal was RobertDeNiro, who turned it down because he felt the role was too similar to ones he had played in the past. MattDillon was also Lee's first choice for Pino.
** Creator/JamesEarlJones was offered to play the role as Da Mayor, but turned it down in favour of ''Film/TheBestOfTheBest''.
** The character [[InspirationallyDisabled Smiley]] was not originally in the script, but Lee added him after when his actor, Roger Guenveur Smith requested a role in his film.
** Creator/LaurenceFishburne was offered but turned down the role of Love Daddy.
** Wesley Snipes turned down a role in the film in order to star in ''Film/MajorLeague''.
** [[spoiler: In the original scripted ending, Sal and Mookie reconcile. Sal, although upset, tells Mookie that he understands that Mookie had to do the right thing. Creator/SpikeLee changed the ending during filming and has never explained why he did]].
* UsefulNotes/BarackObama and his future first lady Michelle saw this film on their first date.