We learned back in August that a new take on “In the Heat of the Night” (originally a novel by John Ball and previously adapted for both the big screen and small screens) was eyeing a return for television. Now it appears that Showtime and MGM Television are developing the new series with The Help and Get on Up helmer Tate Taylor set to executive produce alongside Warren Littlefield and John Norris, both of whom recently served as executive producers on FX’s “Fargo.”
In the Heat of the Night was adapted for the big screen in 1967 by director Norman Jewison. Starring Sidney Poitier and Rod Steiger, the tale of a black detective, Virgil Tibbs, investigating a murder in a racist Mississppi town took home five Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
The original film was followed by two sequels, 1970’s They Call Me MISTER Tibbs! and 1971’s The Organziation, both of which also featured Poitier in the lead. Then, in 1988, NBC began airing a television series version which starred Howard Rollins as Tibbs, although the final, seventh season featured the character only as a guest star.
The new series will be written by Taylor and will take place in present-day Mississippi.