Prisoners on death row in a row riddle

This is off-topic, but since many people have shown interest for brain teasers in the forum, I decided to create a category here and start posting them. So, thanks to Shai, here is the first riddle in this category:
OK guyz, here’s another one: 50 prisoners on death row are scheduled to be executed tomorrow. It so happens that there’s a new king around in the courtry and tomorrow is his first birthday since he got the job, and therefore he decides to pardon some death row prisoners. Before the king became king he was a crazy mathematician, always evaluating people according to their logical skills, and hence he decides on the following scenario: All 50 prisoners will stand in one (straight) line, facing to the same direction (each sees the one in front of him). After that the guards will come (there are a thousand guards) and put blindfolds on the prisoners. After that each prisoner will be given a hat, either a Black or a White one, and wear it. Then the guards will take the blindfolds off. No prisoner can see his own hat, or the the hats of the prisoners behind him in the line, he can see all the hats which are on the side of the line he is looking at (same side as before). If a prisoner will look at his own hat, or backwards, or sideways, and the guards will catch him (there are a thousand guards), all prisoners will be shot dead immediatly. Each prisoner will then have to guess what is the color of his own hat. If he succeed he will live, if not, he will die. There is no fixed order of guessing, and the prisoners can decide together, or individually, on the order of guessing. The king further decides that from all the prisoners that guessed wrong he would pardon one, the one he liked most, and that any prisoner that wouldn’t guess anything in 10 minutes will be hanged. The prisoners have all day and all night to decide what they want to do. They are all very attached to each other, and each one will gladly sacrifice his own life to save another, and therefore they decide to think of a way in which the least possible number of them would die. It is also known that there is no eclipse tomorrow. What should they do ?
Questions, answers, solutions and more riddles – in the Brain Teasers forum
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