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In the Heat of the Night 

The cases and adventures of the police forces in and around Sparta, Mississippi.
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Nominated for 7 Golden Globes. Another 4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
Carroll O'Connor ...  Chief William O. 'Bill' Gillespie / ... 146 episodes, 1988-1995
Alan Autry ...  Capt. V.L. 'Bubba' Skinner / ... 146 episodes, 1988-1995
David Hart ...  Officer Parker Williams / ... 146 episodes, 1988-1995
Hugh O'Connor ...  Lt. Lonnie Jamison / ... 146 episodes, 1988-1995
Howard E. Rollins Jr. ...  Chief of Detectives Virgil Tibbs / ... 121 episodes, 1988-1994
Anne-Marie Johnson ...  Althea Tibbs 119 episodes, 1988-1993
Geoffrey Thorne ...  Sgt. Wilson Sweet / ... 110 episodes, 1988-1993
Crystal Fox ...  Officer Luann Corbin / ... 102 episodes, 1989-1995
C.C. Taylor ...  Officer Charlie Peake / ... 87 episodes, 1989-1995
Dee Shaw Dee Shaw ...  Cpl. Dee Shepard / ... 85 episodes, 1989-1995
Randall Franks ...  Officer Randy Goode 81 episodes, 1989-1993
Denise Nicholas ...  Harriet DeLong / ... 69 episodes, 1989-1995
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Storyline

Bill Gillespie is a police chief in a small town in the American South, and later becomes sheriff of the county. As Bill tries to solve crimes and catch criminals, aided by his capable investigator Virgil Tibbs and police lieutenant Bubba Skinner, he must navigate tricky small-town politics. Racial tensions often run high in the South and this theme is frequently explored. Bill's personal life is often portrayed in this TV drama, as well. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 March 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

In the Heat of the Night See more »

Filming Locations:

Social Circle, Georgia, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(150 episodes)

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The 1989 season was played slightly out of order. The previous season ended with a cliffhanger. However, Carroll O'Connor, who also served as executive producer, wanted to begin the next season with the episode in which Althea Tibbs is raped because he felt that that particular episode had a strong message and that it should be the season opener. The continuation to the cliffhanger was shown a few episodes into that season with Gillespie recapping the events of what happened when he was kidnapped and the events surrounding that period. See more »

Quotes

Bill Gillespie: I'll stay here and round up a posse, in case I feel the need to cut anybody off at the pass.
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Soundtracks

In the Heat of the Night
Music by Quincy Jones
Lyrics by Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman
Arranged by Christopher Page (as Chris Page)
Performed by Bill Champlin
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Carroll O'Conner's last series was a good one!
6 May 2006 | by garrardSee all my reviews

Though most will forever remember O'Conner for his Emmy-winning turn as "Archie Bunker" in the classic "All in the Family," his last television role on the long-running "In the Heat of the Night" was still equally as memorable. Inspired by the Oscar-winning film, starring Rod Steiger and Sidney Poitier, the show dealt with the police force of the mythical town of Sparta, Missisippi, headed by Chief Bill Gillespie with transplanted Philedelphian Virgil Tibbs, new and black to a force that was unprepared for such a high-ranking black. Though the first couple of episodes dealt with the adjustments that had to made with the new man on the force, the racial tension in the department was soon eliminated as both The Chief and Tibbs, along with other policemen (the superb Alan Artry as "Bubba," David Hart as the down-home, tea-drinking "Parker," Geoffrey Horne" and Hugh O'Conner as the young cops, "Sweet" and "Lonnie Jameson," respectively) came to respect and trust each other.

Many of the shows dealt with timely topics as A.I.D.S., spousal abuse, rape, and corrupt politicians. One of the series' most powerful episodes is "A Trip Upstate," wherein Chief Gillespie is asked to attend the execution of a criminal (guest star Paul Benjamin) that he caught years before. The riveting execution is quite detailed and the dialog-less performances by O'Conner and Benjamin are Emmy-worthy. The eye contact between the two actors is unbelievably intense. Whether one is pro or con on the topic of capital punishment, this particular installment should have some effect, one way or the other.


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