Actor Jermaine Hopkins - who got his big break as a teen, in "Lean on Me" - was holding a casting call for his new film "Tears."
"That's how I got discovered, through an open call audition. So once I was put in a position where I have a little bit of say so, I said this is the way I want to do the audition process for this project," Hopkins said.
He also played a key role in the movie "Juice" which established Tupac as a film star.
Both films reflected off-screen reality for Hopkins.
"When I landed the role in Lean on Me it was like a fork in the road. I had the streets and trouble on one side, but then I had the bright lights, camera and Hollywood on this side," he explained.
Hopkins made some mistakes along the way. He was arrested in Arizona last December and did some time after trying to buy about 200 pounds of marijuana an undercover deputy.
Now he's working on a film about two young men who get in trouble trying to sell drugs.
While the auditions and callbacks are happening in Raleigh, plans call for the film itself to be made down the road in Durham. That decision could bring lots of money to the Bull City when cameras start rolling.
"I want to reach right back to that same core, and find another Jermaine Hopkins, or better," Hopkins said.
It's his way of giving thanks, by creating opportunities.