Characters in the movie “The Battle of Narvik”

In this section of the exhibition you will meet characters from the movie and the historical figures who are the likely sources of inspiration. The characters are marked according to the traffic light model:

These are facts

This is fiction

This is somewhere in between

You will also meet some historical persons you do not encounter in the movie.

Historical photo: Narvik War Museum/ Imperial War Museum/ O. Nordsjø
Photos from the movie: Nordisk Film
Stills: Eirik Linder Aspeland/ Nordisk Film


Ingrid and Gunnar Tofte

Ingrid and Gunnar Tofte

Gunnar Tofte and Ingrid Tofte (played by Carl Martin Eggesbø and Kristine Hartgen)

The Tofte family, comprising the young couple Gunnar and Ingrid, the 6-year-old Ole, and grandfather Aslak, live through the dramatic aftermath of the German invasion, and the battle of Narvik in 1940. Gunnar is a soldier who experiences close combat and captivity, all the while being separated from his family for several weeks. Meanwhile, Ingrid is faced with hard choices that carry serious consequences. When they meet again, they find that much has changed for them personally, as well as in the war that looms over them all.
The two main characters, Gunnar and Ingrid, are fully fictional. Gunnar’s participation in different parts of the battle could not have been by one single person, because he is involved in events that happened to different military units. Ingrid’s story reflects challenges and dilemmas experienced by lots of women during the war and subsequent occupation. And yet, singular events experienced by both main characters are inspired by the real stories of civilians and military personnel.
Major Omberg

Major Omberg

“Major Omberg” (Played by Henrik Mestad)

The major in charge of Gunnar’s unit witnesses his superiors surrender Narvik. He decides to take his men out of the city to set up defensive positions along the railway to stop the Germans from taking control of the iron ore shipment. He later leads the fighting at Roasme, as well as the Norwegian troops who take part in the reconquest of Narvik.

The Norwegian officers

Major Omberg is an amalgamation of several Norwegian officers in charge of various units in 1940. For example, it was major Sverre Spjeldnæs who allegedly said the words “Doch, wir marschieren” to the German sentries when 200 Norwegian soldiers marched out of Narvik on April 9th. During the demolition of the Norddal bridge on April 14th, Major Omdal was the commanding Norwegian officer on the scene. And it was major Ivar Hyldmo’s unit that took part in reconquering Narvik.


Consul Ross

Consul Ross

Consul Ross (Played by Billy Campbell)

The British consul Ross is helped by one of his colleagues to hide in a cabin near Narvik. From there, they manage to sneak out information which the British Navy uses to defeat German positions in and around the city. In the end the consul and his colleague are at risk of being compromised.

Vice consul George Gibbs

The British vice consul in Narvik in 1940 was George Gibbs. Same as the fictional consul Ross, Gibbs hid in a cabin in the Fagernes Mountain by Narvik in the days following the German invasion. But unlike Ross, the vice consul was cut off from communicating with the outside world. He was never compromised, but had to keep moving from place to place to stay hidden. Gibbs was evacuated back to Great Britain in June 1940.

General Dietl

General Dietl

General Dietl (Played by Holger Handtke)

In the early hours of April 9th, the German general Dietl convinces the Norwegian commander and his unit to lay down their arms and surrender. Dietl checks in to Royal Hotel, where he holds audiences with the German consul about the governance and defence of the city.

General Eduard Dietl

The experienced Eduard Dietl was the commanding officer of the German troops who captured the Narvik area on April 9th, 1940. He was held in high esteem by Hitler, whom he had known since the early 1920s. In the beginning of the campaign, Dietl kept his headquarters in Narvik. Before long, though, he moved out of the city spending the last few weeks at Bjørnfjell close to the Swedish border.

The mayor

The mayor

The mayor (Played by Emil Johnsen)

The young and hot-tempered mayor of Narvik is someone the Germans are compelled to collaborate with. The mayor is blamed for the British consul’s escape, and is arrested by the Germans. When Narvik is reconquered, he celebrates with the inhabitants. And when German bombers approach Narvik, he helps organise the evacuation of civilians from the city.

Mayor Theodor Broch

In 1940, the 36-year-old Theodor Broch was Narvik’s mayor. He was arrested already after the German-British naval battle of April 13th, accused of sabotaging German lines of communication. Broch got off the hook because he was so important for the city’s civilian administration. Broch’s authoritative appearance was reassuring for the uneasy and frightened inhabitants, and also evoked the Germans’ trust. However, by mid-June he was arrested again, this time in Harstad, suspected of having helped the British vice consul Gibbs. Broch dramatically managed to escape and cross the border to Sweden.




“Polly” (Played by Kari Bremnes)

The hotel owner “Polly” keeps her calm when the Germans enter Royal Hotel in Narvik. She maintains regular service during the challenging conditions, and witnesses the heavy damage on the hotel caused by British shells. “Polly” is an important support for the increasingly desperate Ingrid.

Hotel manager Petra Gleditsch

“Polly” is the equivalent of real-life Petra “Polly” Gleditsch. She ran the hotel in Narvik for many years, before, during, and after the war. Gleditsch was known for being on top of her business. In 1939 she re-opened Royal Hotel in Narvik, which she continued to manage until her retirement ten years later.  

Consul Wussow

Consul Wussow

Consul Wussow (Played by Christoph Bach)

The German consul in Narvik is an important official during the battle in 1940. He collaborates closely with general Dietl, and simultaneously demonstrates aggressive and understanding characteristics. He loyally prioritises the interests of the German authority, but also pursues his own personal goals, which has consequences for many.

Vice consul Fritz Wussow

Fritz Wussow was the German vice consul in Narvik from January 1940. For a few months before the appointment, he was also functioning liaison for German intelligence in Narvik. Wussow was in Narvik throughout the battle. But in reality, he never held as prominent a role as the German consul of the movie.



The British navy officer

The British navy officer

The British navy officer (Played by Benjamin Noble)

After the reconquest of Narvik, the mayor makes sure a representative of the British navy agrees to organise the fishing fleet to evacuate inhabitants from Narvik.

Navy lieutenant Patrick Dalzel-Job

The British navy officer corresponds to real-life Patrick Dalzel-Job, who, by disobeying an order, actively helped evacuate the remaining civilians out of Narvik at the turn of the month, May-June. In reality, though, it was Dalzel-Job who sought out mayor Broch to help kickstart the comprehensive and complicated evacuation.