Conspiracy/Characters

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Reinhard Heydrich

Played by Kenneth Branagh

The SS Chief of Reich Security (Main Office) and Reichsprotektor of Bohemia and Moravia, Heydrich serves as the main protagonist for the film. He has ultimate oversight over all matters relating to the Jewish question, and is the immediate subordinate to Heinrich Himmler. A ruthless and intelligent man, he spends much of the film threatening, flattering and cajoling to bring the ministries into line. He was killed by British-trained Czech commandos with an anti-tank grenade laced with botulinum poison in 1942.

Adolf Eichmann

Played by Stanley Tucci

Immediate subordinate to Heydrich, and head of the SS Office for Jewish Affairs, Eichmann is the man tasked with arranging the meeting, and the final solution that arises from it. Eichmann takes the role of a dispassionate observer, frequently chiming in on Heydrich's side, and generally as a man with no purpose beyond ideology. He later became known as the "architect of the Holocaust". After the war, he fled to Argentina, where he was kidnapped by Mossad and taken to Israel, where he became the only man ever to executed by that country.

Wilhelm Stuckart

Played by Colin Firth

State Secretary of the Reich Ministry of the Interior under Wilhelm Frick, Stuckart was author of the racist Nuremberg Laws. Argues for avoiding distress to German couples and prefers the sterilization and "natural extinction" of Jews to Heydrich's policy of extermination. During the film, he plays a highly adversarial role to Heydrich and Eichmann, at least until Heydrich explains a few things to him. He survived the war, was released from prison in 1949 and killed in a car accident in 1953.

Gerhard Klopfer

Played by Ian McNeice

A fat, loud, arrogant and rude Nazi bigwig, he, as he constantly reminds everyone, speaks for Martin Bormann, the party chancellor. He does not get along well with Stuckart, whose insistence that everything be legal does not gel with Klopfer's idea that the Nazis make the laws they need on the spot. He shows more interest in the food than the Jews, and happily impersonates Jews being gassed. He was released after the war due to lack of evidence, becoming a tax advisor in Ulm. He died in 1987.

Martin Luther

Played by Kevin McNally

Undersecretary at the Nazi Foreign Office. Violently anti-semitic, he speaks for Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop. He is prepared to go along with whatever Heydrich says, and generally tries to ingratiate himself with the SS. After a failed attempt to usurp his boss, Von Ribbentrop, he was sent to Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp, and died of a heart attack shortly after its liberation by the Red Army in 1945.

Not to be confused with the German monk and theologian.

Friedrich Wilhelm Kritzinger

Played by David Threfall

The Deputy Head of the Reich Chancellery under Hans Lammers. Kritzinger shares Stuckart's opposition to outright extermination, and is the only participants who come close to making a moral objection (in Real Life, Kritzinger was the only participant to express any remorse over his actions). Initially he takes at face value terms such as "evacuation" and "labour", before realizing their true nature. He attempted to resign after the Conference, but this was refused on unknown grounds. After the war, he declared himself ashamed of what he had done, and was released from Allied custody. He died in 1947.

Georg Leibbrant

Played by Ewan Stewart

Part of the occupying administration for the Eastern Territories, Liebbrant is concerned for the situation the Eastern territories and for the connection between Communism and Judaism. He also discusses sterilization positively, but generally gives the impression that his main concern is the situation in the Ostministerium. After the war, he was interned, but released without trial in 1950. He emigrated to the USA that year, but later returned to Germany, dying in 1982 in Bonn.

Alfred Meyer

Played by Brian Pettifer

A bespectacled, shrewish, man, Meyer is Nazi Gauleiter in charge of the General Government (a section of Poland that formed a subdivision to the Reich) and the expulsion of Jews and ethnic Poles from "German" territory, he is concerned about the possibility of epidemic among the ghettos spreading to ethnic Germans. He does not care what is done about the Jews, as long as it is done fast. He committed suicide in 1945 when it became apparent that Germany was about to lose the war.

Otto Hoffmann

Played by Nicholas Woodemann

Head of the SS Race and Settlement Office, Hoffmann is eager to contribute, though somewhat naive. He initially believes that the extermination is up for debate, preferring to put the Jews to work instead. He is taken ill during the conference, though he later returns. After the war, he was jailed for 6 years (from a 25 year sentence) for war crimes. He became a clerk in Bad Mergentheim, where he died in 1982.

Erich Neumann

Played by Jonathon Coy

Director of the Office of the Four Year Plan, Neumann is subordinate to Hermann Goering, and thus has several tense moments with Klopfer. An eager careerist, Neumann bumbles around introducing himself with his Large Ham Title, to general apathy. He was interned by the Allies in 1945, but released in 1948 on the grounds of poor health. He died in 1951.

Heinrich Mueller

Played by Brendan Coyle

Chief of the Gestapo, Mueller enthusiastically supports Heydrich and is part of the "inner circle" along with Heydrich and Eichmann. He is aware that the extermination of the Jews is the purpose of this meeting, and makes little comment, though he occasionally threatens Kritzinger and Stuckart, with varying degrees of success. He walked out of the Fuehrerbunker on May 1 1945 and was never seen again, dead or alive.

Josef Buehler

Played by Ben Daniels

State Secretary of the General Goverment, Buehler is incredibly annoyed at the attempts by the SS to suborn his ministry, including building gassing facilities in Poland. Like Meyer, he is concerned about the possibility of disease, and insists that Poland must be "evacuated" before the Old Reich. Also like Meyer, he favours a speedy solution, whatever that may be. After the war, he was extradited to Poland and hanged in 1948.

Rudolf Lange

Played by Barnaby Kay

The SS Officer in charge of SD forces in Latvia, Lange is haunted by the mass executions of Jews and urges the conference to find a new solution. He has presided over the execution of 250,000 Jews in Latvia. He is contemptuous of Eichmann and Heydrich's insistence on euphemisms, and urges a swift resolution to the question, and is pleased when one presents itself in the form of the gas chambers. He was last seen in Poznan in 1945, and it is believed he was either killed in action or committed suicide.

Roland Friesler

Played by Owen Teale

Presiding Judge of the People's Court, representing the ministry of Justice. Friesler is in favour of the murder of Jews. Racist even by Nazi standards, he does not take the meeting especially seriously after the murder of Jews is decided upon - thereafter, his dialogue is limited to joking about how inferior Jews and Germans are. He was killed in a USAF bombing raid in 1945, when one of the pillars of his court building fell and crushed him.

Karl Eberhard Schoengarth

Played by Pete Sullivan

A young, arrogant and careerist SD Officer assigned to the General Government of Poland. Schoengarth has been working behind Buehler and Meyer's backs in order to develop extermination facilities across the General Government. They are not pleased. He is an enthusiastic supported of Heydrich and Eichmann, and in favour of extermination. Like Friesler, he does not take the meeting very seriously, and makes wisecracks about murdering the Jews. He was captured by the Allies, charged with the murder of a downed Allied airman and hanged by the British in 1945.