* CaliforniaDoubling: Averted with season 1, which was set and shot in Illinois -- the scenes at Fox River were filmed on location in Joliet Correctional Center, which was an active prison from 1858 to 2002.
** Played straight with seasons two and three as production was moved to Texas, which played the part of ''everywhere'' in the USA, as well as Panama. A few scenes were also filmed in Florida.
** Zig-zagged with season four. Production and the character's headquarters was moved to Los Angeles, California, but the plot takes the characters to various other locations across the country over the course of the season.
** Season five is largely set in Yemen, but was filmed in Morocco and Canada.
* TheCastShowoff : Creator/WentworthMiller was a competitive college swimmer and in season one he gets to show off his swimming skills. Knocking the water out of his ear was a ThrowItIn bonus.
** Creator/SarahWayneCallies plays Dr. Sara Tancredi.
** Paul Kellerman is played by Paul Adelstein.
** Christian Stolte plays guard Keith Stolte in Fox River.
** Danny [=McCarthy=] plays Danny Hale.
* DawsonCasting: Tweener is supposed to be 18, but actor Lane Garrison was ages 25 and 26 when he played him.
* DyeingForYourArt: A notable aversion with Wentworth Miller, who opted not to work out prior to taking the role of Michael because he saw the character as a BadassBookworm, not an ActionHero. It worked in the character's favor, as his slightly scrawny physique in the first season helped him seem more out of place in the prison and fit more with his background as a structural engineer.
* FakeAmerican: Dominic Purcell (Lincoln) is Australian.
* RealLife/MeanCharacterNiceActor: T-Bag is an extremely depraved character, but by all accounts Creator/RobertKnepper is not.
* TheOtherDarrin: Terrence Steadman is played by John Billingsley in Season 1. He was replaced by Jeff Perry in Season 2.
* PostScriptSeason: While the creators mentioned the show was only designed for two seasons, Fox squeezed a third season out of them in 2007-2008. This unfolded the same year when... you guessed it... the writer's strike happened. As a result, the third season was truncated to 13 episodes, and forced the writers to produce a fourth season to wrap up the show. Depending on who you ask, the fourth year was either a creative resurgence from the mediocre third season or a godawful train wreck of epic proportions. The controversial series ending was even more polarizing. And let's not even get into the cash grabbing DVD movie, The Final Break. Despite the series allegedly ending for good, a ''fifth'' season is set to premiere in 2017.
* RealitySubtext: Sona is loosely based on the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carandiru_massacre Carandiru]] prison in Sao Paulo, Brazil, specifically the 1992 prison riot.
* RoleEndingMisdemeanor: Barely averted; Tweener was actually killed off in the script shortly before his actor got sent to jail for manslaughter.