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Oscars flashback: ‘In the Heat of the Night’ wins Best Picture 50 years ago taking on racism in the south [Watch]

Oscars flashback: ‘In the Heat of the Night’ wins Best Picture 50 years ago taking on racism in the south [Watch]

Racial issues in the south. Small town police department. Best Picture nominee at the Oscars. Lead performance frontrunner to win. These are certainly descriptions of 2018 Oscar contender “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri” starring Frances McDormand but they also describe the film that won the Academy Award for Best Picture 50 years ago: “In the Heat of the Night” (watch the video above).

With “Get Out” and “Three Billboards” as big awards hits for 2017 and “Moonlight” as Best Picture the previous year, it looks as though films dealing with racism and civil rights have risen to a new level of recognition from the Academy. One of the first to be embraced by Oscar voters was the 1967 film “In the Heat of the Night,” a crime drama about an African-American detective (Sidney Poitier) and bigoted police chief (Rod Steiger) in rural Mississippi.

SEEOscar Best Picture Gallery: History of Every Academy Award-Winning Movie

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