William Russell (English actor)
William Russell Enoch
19 November 1924
Sunderland, County Durham, England
|Other names||Russell Enoch|
|Known for||First male Doctor Who companion|
(m. 1953, divorced)
Etheline Lewis (?—present)
William Russell Enoch (born 19 November 1924) is an English actor. He came to fame in 1956 when he took the title role in the television series The Adventures of Sir Lancelot on ITV, and subsequently played the role of companion Ian Chesterton in the BBC's Doctor Who. He appeared from the show's first episode in 1963, and departed in 1965.
William Russell was born William Russell Enoch on 19 November 1924, in Sunderland, County Durham, England, to Eva Compston (Pile) and Alfred James Enoch. He became interested in acting at an early age. He was involved in organizing entertainments during his national service in the Royal Air Force and then, after university, went into repertory theatre.
Russell was one of the four original cast members of Doctor Who, starring opposite William Hartnell as the Doctor, Jacqueline Hill as Barbara Wright, Carole Ann Ford as Susan Foreman and later Maureen O'Brien as Vicki. His first involvement in the series took the form of the untransmitted pilot episode, which was eventually reshot and broadcast as "An Unearthly Child". He eventually departed, alongside Hill, in the penultimate story of the second season, The Chase.
Russell has continued his association with Doctor Who, having lent his voice as a narrator to several of the audiobook releases of the lost 1960s episodes. He appeared in The Game, one of the continuing Doctor Who audio stories produced by Big Finish. He has also recorded readings for some of the CD audio adaptations of Doctor Who story novelisations originally published by Target Books.
In the late 1990s Russell returned to the role of Ian for the VHS release of the story The Crusade, of which the second and fourth episodes are lost. He recorded several in-character scenes to camera, which helped to bridge the gaps between the existing episodes.
In 2013, the BBC produced An Adventure in Space and Time, a docudrama depicting the creation and early days of Doctor Who, as part of the programme's fiftieth anniversary celebrations. Russell appeared as a character in the drama, portrayed by actor Jamie Glover. Russell also had a cameo role in An Adventure in Space and Time playing a BBC Commissionaire (security guard) named Harry.
The same year, Russell portrayed both Ian and the First Doctor in the Big Finish audio play The Light at the End, produced to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who making him the oldest actor ever to portray The Doctor.
On 2 December 1988, 64-year-old Russell and his second wife, Etheline Margareth Lewis, had their first child together Alfred Enoch. Alfred is also an actor, known for playing Dean Thomas in the Harry Potter film series and Wes Gibbins in the ABC television series How to Get Away with Murder.
Russell appeared in British films from 1950 onwards, appearing in well-known productions such as They Who Dare (1954), One Good Turn (1955), The Man Who Never Was (1956) and The Great Escape (1963). Later, he had minor roles in Terror (1978), Superman (1978) and Death Watch (1979) with Harvey Keitel and Harry Dean Stanton.
|1952||Gift Horse a.k.a. Glory at Sea||Crewman||As Russell Enoch|
|1953||Appointment in London a.k.a. Raiders in the Sky||RAF Officer||Uncredited|
|Intimate Relations a.k.a. Disobedient||Michael||As Enoch Russell|
|Malta Story||Officer in Prison||Uncredited|
|Always a Bride||Dutton's Chauffeur||Uncredited|
|The Saint's Return a.k.a. The Saint's Girl Friday||Keith Merton||As Russell Enoch|
|1954||They Who Dare||Lieut. Tom Poole||As Russell Enoch|
|The Gay Dog||Leslie Gowland||As Russell Enoch|
|1955||One Good Turn||Alec Bigley|
|Above Us the Waves||Ramsey|
|1956||The Man Who Never Was||Joe|
|1957||The Big Chance||Bill Anderson|
|1958||The Adventures of Hal 5||The Vicar|
|1963||The Great Escape||Sorren|
|1980||Death Watch||Dr Mason||As William Russel|
|1981||Mark Gertler: Fragments of a Biography||Roger Fry|
|1998||Mob Queen||Swede Carlson|
His big break was the title role in The Adventures of Sir Lancelot on ITV in 1956. Russell has acted in many plays and TV series including Disraeli, Testament of Youth and the part of Ted Sullivan, the short-lived second husband of Rita Sullivan in Coronation Street. He also had a small part in an episode of The Black Adder, as a late replacement for Wilfrid Brambell, who had become impatient with delays to his scene and left the set before shooting it, and appeared as the Duke of Gloucester in the Robin of Sherwood episode "The Pretender". Other roles include Lanscombe in an episode of the 2005 series of Agatha Christie's Poirot ("After the Funeral").
|1954||Lonesome Like||Rev. Frank Alleyne||Short Film, As Russell Enoch|
|1955||St. Ives||St. Ives||Main character, all 6 episodes|
|The Sleeping Beauty||The Prince||TV Movie|
|1956||Theatre Royal||Boy||Episode: "The Assassin"|
|Assignment Foreign Legion||Gerry Brooke||Episode: "The Ghost"|
|The Adventures of Aggie a.k.a. Aggie||Ted Jordan||Episode: "Hypertension"|
|1956–1957||The Adventures of Sir Lancelot||Sir Lancelot du lac / Sir Blaint||Main character, all 30 episodes|
|1957||Hour of Mystery||Kevin Ormond||Episode: "Crime of Margaret Foley"|
|Nicholas Nickleby||Nicholas Nickleby||Main character, all 10 episodes|
|Sword of Freedom||Count Rene D'Albert||Episode: "The Strange Intruder"|
|1958||Television World Theatre||Prince Pao||Episode: "The Circle of Chalk"|
|Who Fought Alone: Epitaph on a Scottish Soldier||TV Movie|
|Saturday Playhouse||Voulain||Episode: "The Duke in Darkness"|
|Television Playwright||Anthony Broderick||Episode: "In a Backward Country"|
|1959||ITV Play of the Week||Nevil Rigden||Episode: "The Face of Treason"|
|Armchair Theatre||Smoky||Episode: "The Girl on the Beach"|
|Never Die||Inspector Sauvé||TV Movie|
|Tales From Dickens||David Copperfield||3 episodes: "Uriah Heep" (1959), "David and Dora" (1959), "David and Dora Get Married" (1961)|
|1960||St. Ives||St. Ives||Main character, all 6 episodes; remake of 1955 serial|
|BBC Sunday-Night Play||Lord Bleane /
John Freeman /
Oliver Farrant /
Charles Hemington /
Col. Friedrich Eilers, Leader of a Fighter Squadron /
Gerald Croft /
"Twentieth Century Theatre: Our Betters" (1960)
"Twentieth Century Theatre: The Fanatics" (1960)
"Twentieth Century Theatre: I Have Been Here Before" (1960)
"Twentieth Century Theatre: The Elder Statesman" (1960)
"Summer Theatre: The Devil's General" (1960)
"An Inspector Calls" (1961)
"Pig in the Middle" (1963)
|1961||Adventure Story||Hephaestion||TV Movie|
|Triton||Captain Belwether||Main character, all 6 episodes|
|A Song of Sixpence||Alberto Monzelli||Short Film|
|1962–1963||The Edgar Wallace Mystery Theatre||Mike Stafford / Mike Cochrane||2 episodes, "The Share Out" (1962) and "Return to Sender" (1963)|
|1963||Drama 61-67||Mick Lambert||Episode: "Drama 63: Somebody's Dying"|
|Jane Eyre||St. John Rivers||2 episodes, Episodes 5 and 6|
|Moonstrike||Philippe||Episode: "The Biggest Bandit"|
|Suspense||John Richards||Episode: "The Patch Card"|
|1963–1965||Doctor Who||Ian Chesterton||Main character, 77 episodes|
|1966||Breaking Point||Martin Kennedy||Main character, all 5 episodes|
|1966–1967||This Man Craig||Peter Rogers / Peter Woodburn / Avis||3 episodes: "Mates" (1966), "Old Flame" (1966), "You Can Choose Your Friends" (1967)|
|1967||Dr. Finlay's Casebook||Neville||Episode: "Who Made You?"|
|1969||Who-Dun-It||Marcel Dupre||Episode: "Don't Shoot the Cook" (1969)|
|Detective||Bill Cartwright||Episode: "And So to Murder"|
|Parkin's Patch||Wilkins||Episode: "No Friendship For Coppers"|
|1972–1973||Harriet's Back in Town||Tom Preston||90 episodes|
|1972–1981||ITV Playhouse||Daddy / Dr. Crane / Frank||3 episodes|
|1974||Justice||Dr. Victor Ashworth||Episode: "Point of Death"|
|Father Brown||Reverend Wilfred Bohun||Episode: "The Hammer of God"|
|Whodunnit?||Captain Alexander Anderson||Episode: "A Piece of Cake: Christmas Special"|
|1975||The Hanged Man||Peter Kroger||Episode: "Knave of Coins"|
|The Main Chance||Arnold Galbraith||Episode: "We're the Bosses Now"|
|Against The Crowd||Arthur Penwarren||Episode: "Bread and Circuses"|
|The Doll||Julian Osborne||Episode: "#1.2"|
|Three Men in a Boat||Doctor||TV Movie|
|1975–1977||Crown Court||Edward Birkland /Robert Aldrich||2 episodes|
|1977||Van der Valk||Kees Rokin||Accidental|
|1978||BBC2 Play of the Week||Lord Folkstone
|Disraeli||Wyndham Lewis||2 episodes|
|Parables||Peter Vernon||Episode: "A Gental Rain"|
|Strangers||Bamford Harker||Episode: "Accidental Death"|
|1979||Testament of Youth||Marriott||Episode: "Buxton 1913"|
|Shoestring||David Carn||Private Ear|
|Spearhead||Mr. Dickson B.F.S||Episode: "Repercussions"|
|1980||Mackenzie||Francis Hammond||2 episodes|
|Armchair Thriller||Senior Officer||Episode: "Dead Man's Kit: Part 1"|
|Play for Today||Don||Episode: "Instant Enlightenment Including V.A.T."|
|The Professionals||Charles Holly||Episode: "Involvement"|
|1983||The Black Adder||The Duke of Winchester||Episode: "The Archbishop"|
|1986||Robin of Sherwood||The Duke of Gloucester||Episode: "The Pretender"|
|1988||The Four Minute Mile||AAA Official|
|1990||Boon||John Loseley||Episode: "Tales from the River Bank"|
|1992||Coronation Street||Ted Sullivan||46 episodes|
|1995||The Affair||Dr. Hastings||TV Film|
|Casualty||Mo Meredrew||Episode: "Halfway House"|
|1997||Great Performances||Henry V (at Shakespeare's Globe)|
|2000||Heartbeat||Gabriel Firth||Episode: "Gabriel's Last Stand"|
|2005||Agatha Christie: Poirot||Lanscombe||Episode: "After the Funeral"|
|2013||An Adventure in Space and Time||Harry - Security Guard|
Russell has played a number of roles in theatre with the Royal Shakespeare Company, the National Theatre and in the opening season of the Globe Theatre. In the 1980s, while a member of the Actors' Touring Company, he used the stage name Russell Enoch; on leaving the company he reverted to the name William Russell.
- Births, Marriages & Deaths Index of England & Wales, 1916-2005.; at ancestry.com
- Foster, Chuck (8 February 2013). "An Adventure in Space and Time: Jamie Glover to play William Russell". Doctor Who News. Retrieved 8 February 2013.
- Foster, Chuck (9 February 2013). "An Adventure in Space and Time: William Russell". Doctor Who News. Retrieved 9 February 2013.
- "An Interview with William Russell". Radio Times.
- "What Harry Potter's Alfred Enoch got up to next". Evening Standard. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
- "William Russell". IMDb. Retrieved 4 December 2017.