How well do you know the movie In the Heat of the Night?


By: J. Reinoehl

6 Min Quiz

Image: tmdb

About This Quiz

"In the Heat of the Night," by director Norman Jewison, won an Oscar for Best Picture in 1968. What do you remember about the movie "In the Heat of the Night"? Take the quiz below to find out.

What was the name of the murdered man?

"It's Colbert all right. Skull's caved in."


Who sang the theme song, "In the Heat of the Night"?

Quincy Jones composed the music, and Alan and Marilyn Bergman wrote the lyrics for all the music used in the movie. However. Ray Charles performed the music for the theme song.


Why was Tibbs in town?

"I was visiting my mother. I came in on the 12:35 from Brownsville. I was waiting to go out on the 4:05."


Where did Officer Wood find Tibbs?

Lighting the train depot was difficult at the period when the film was shot. The lighting designer did not have much experience shooting in color, and the equipment wasn't as advanced as what we have today and required higher powered lights. The director frequently used screens to tone shots and create a more dramatic image.


How much money did Tibbs make each week?

"$162.39 a week. Well boy, take him outside Wood, but treat him easy because a man that makes $162.39 a week, man, we do not want to ruffle him."


Who played Chief Gillespie?

Rodney Stephen Steiger (April 14, 1925-July 9, 2002) won an Oscar for Best Actor because of his performance in the movie "In the Heat of the Night." He was nominated two other times, for performances in "The Pawnbroker" and "On the Waterfront."


What was the first thing Tibbs noticed about the body?

"A new manicure, that's good. That's very good."


In which city did "In the Heat of the Night" take place?

Sparta, MS, exists as an unincorporated town in Chickasaw County. The film town was not based on this town and is fictional. The movie was actually filmed in Sparta, IL.


Finish the quote "They call me ____________________."

"You're pretty sure of yourself, ain't you, Virgil? Virgil, that's a funny name for a … boy that come from Philadelphia. What do they call you up there?" "They call me Mr. Tibbs."


What nervous habit did Chief Gillespie have?

Gillespie was patterned after Bull Connor, who was the sheriff of Birmingham during the most violent part of the Civil Rights Movement. Although Connor was not noted for chewing gum and Steiger felt it was too cliché, the actor soon discovered gum was a tool to help communicate emotions to the audience.


What was the best way to determine the time of death, according to Tibbs?

"Well, I'll be able to pinpoint that as soon as I get a thermometer. As you know, loss of heat from the brain is the most reliable way of determining time of death. Right, Chief?"


To which state was the suspect trying to run?

They waited until a train was coming to shoot the train scene as Harvey was trying to make it to Arkansas. U. S. 49 crosses into Arkansas near Lula, MS.


What was Harvey's alibi?

"Shooting pool at Larry's Lounge. I got there about 10:00." "What time'd you leave?" "Not until closing. Must've been 1:00."


Where did the Mayor work?

The Mayor worked at the Sparta Equipment Company. Although Tennessee succeeded from the Union, it was the last to do so, and its senator, Andrew Johnson, remained in his seat throughout the war. Still, actor Poitier experienced negative attitudes when on location in the South and did not want to go.


At the train station, why did Chief Gillespie ask Virgil to stay?

"This town needs a factory, Virgil. Colbert come down from Chicago to build it."


Why did Chief Gillespie lock Tibbs in with Harvey?

"Wood, you take him and you lock him up for withholding evidence. Go on, move! Put him with his friend Harvey Oberst."


What was the name of the enemy Colbert had in town?

"That's Endicott. He's been fighting us all the way. He sits up on his hill and runs this county or did until we moved in."


What company did Endicott own?

They only spent about three days filming south of the Mason-Dixon line. To get the scenes of the cotton fields, the crew had to travel to Dyersburg, TN.


Why did Chief Gillespie want Virgil to leave before solving the murder?

"Virgil, if you get killed, we're gonna have one hell of a mess in this town. Do you know that?"


What happened right after Endicott slapped Tibbs?

The director felt it was important to show Tibbs slapping Endicott. This created a dilemma for Stieger, because he as an actor really didn't know how to respond since something like that had never happened before in real life or any other movie.


Why did Officer Wood change his route?

"I already knew why he changed his route… He was afraid I'd see some naked white girl down the block."


Who played Detective Tibbs?

Detective Tibbs was played by Sidney Poitier (born February 20, 1927). While filming in Tennessee, Poitier and the director had connecting rooms as added security in case there was trouble.


Why did Chief Gillespie suspect Sam Wood?

"I know that Colbert cashed a check for $900. Sam made a big cash deposit. I know that you caught him in a lie, and I know that's enough for me."


What did Harvey want Packy to bring him in jail?

"Will you let him bring me a cheeseburger… Now you're talking."


What was the name of the girl Sam supposedly knocked up?

Quentin Dean primarily had guest appearances in Westerns, but her performance as Delores did get her nominated for a Golden Globe. Delores was the key to the mystery, and the scenes in the opening had to be carefully filmed so she would not show or do anything that offended the censors.


At what time did Wood walk out of the diner on the night of the murder?

"Tuesday night, you walked out of here at 2:40, right? ...Two minutes from now."


What did Wood order at the diner that was frequently sold out?

Wood always wanted fruit pie, but the restaurant was frequently sold out. The director felt that the flies, insects and even the dog that wandered on to the set helped make the movie more real to the audience.


Where was Colbert killed initially (not found)?

"I found a piece of wood in Colbert's scalp. The lab identified it as pine. Three people saw Colbert drive by their houses alone on the way back from Endicott's.


What did Chief Gillespie drink with Tibbs at his home?

They drank Bourbon whiskey. Sidney Poitier preferred to create a clean-cut, well-educated image and primarily played well-educated characters. One example of this is when he first started acting, and people complained about his Bahamian accent. He then worked hard to rid himself of it


Who came to get Tibbs at Chief Gillespie's house?

"Chief… you know where I can find Virgil?" "Who are you?" "Packy, Chief. Packy Harrison. I'm a friend of Harv's.


On Tibbs' final night in Sparta, how many carloads of lynchers were looking for him?

There were two carloads of men looking for Tibbs. Poitier struggled throughout the film with why his character would remain in such a bigoted area when he could leave.


Where did Packy take Tibbs?

"Mrs. Bellamy?" "People around here call me Mama Caleba." "Mama, I'm not from around here."


Who killed Colbert?

Anthony James, who played Ralph, frequently played sleazy villains in Westerns. Notably, he parodied his performances in "The Naked Gun 2-1/2."


Why did Ralph kill Colbert?

"A man's name: first name, last name. The man who's paying you for Delores Purdy's abortion."


Warren Oates played which supporting character?

Warren Oates (July 5, 1928-April 3, 1982) was Officer Sam Wood. Popular in Westerns of the '60s and '70s, he more recently appeared as Sergeant Hulka in "Stripes."


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