Actor-director Dennis Hopper was in New Orleans more than 20 years ago to make "Easy Rider," in which he played a biker who used drugs. Now he's back, but on the other side of the law.

"I feel that it's important to tell the other side of the story and this is the other side of the story," he said.He's filming the "Barry Seal Story" for HBO and playing the role of a federal drug informant.

Barry Seal, once one of the Drug Enforcement Administration's best undercover agents, was gunned down four years ago at a Baton Rouge halfway house where he was serving a drug conspiracy sentence.

"My first film `Easy Rider' introduced cocaine as a street drug. Before `Easy Rider,' cocaine was thought of as a drug of kings. It was a very, very expensive drug and very rare," said Hopper, a former drug user. "It was also my drug of preference when I was a user.

"So I just felt like this was an important film to sort of tie up loose ends."