Norwegian scriptwriter Thomas Nordseth-Tiller, who wrote Max Manus – Norway’s biggest cinema success since 1975 – died Tuesday (May 12) after a long illness. He was 28 years old.

Nordseth-Tiller studied film in Oslo, Perth and San Francisco before returning to Norway with is Max Manus script. It won first prize in a pitching competition at the Kosmorama Film Festival in Trondheim; in the bar afterwards he sold the idea to Norwegian veteran producer, John M Jacobsen, of Filmkameratene.

Their $9.2m (NOK 60m) World War II epic about Norwegian resistance hero Max Manus has so far reached 1.2m admissions on its domestic run, for Nordisk Filmdistribusjon.

Before his death Nordseth-Tiller was working on another WW2 story, about Communist leader Asbjørn Sunde and the Osvald Gang, based on the book, Men in Darkness (Menn I Mørket)