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William Russ

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William Russ is an American actor and TV director who is well known for his role in the sitcom Boy Meets World.


Russ was born in Portsmouth, Virginia, to a naval officer. He attended the University of Michigan, where he was a member of the Michigan cheerleader team (which was all-male at the time) and also a diver. He first started acting on the New York stage before moving onto TV and film roles, having his first supporting role in Death Bed: The Bed That Eats in 1977; the film would not be officially released until 2003. During the 1980s, he found work in more supporting roles such as Crisis at Central High, The Border, The Right Stuff, St. Elsewhere, and Crime Story. Russ also guest-starred in the TV series Miami Vice, and made fourteen appearances on the crime drama Wiseguy. Russ then received critical acclaim when he starred in Pastime as Roy Dean Bream, a veteran minor-league hurler who mentors a young phenomenon. The role had earned him a nomination at the 1992 Independent Spirit Awards for "Best Male Lead."

In 1993, he was cast in his most well-known role, as Alan Matthews on the TV sitcom Boy Meets World. He portrayed this role until the series made its conclusion in 2000, also directing several of the show's episodes during its last three seasons. His other TV directing credits include directing one episode each of Lizzie McGuire and Rude Awakening. Simultaneous to his role in Boy Meets World, Russ continued performing in other series and films, primarily made-for-TV films. In 1998, he portrayed Danny and Derek Vinyard's father in the critically-acclaimed American History X. Later. Russ then starred in the short-lived TV serial drama Mister Sterling. In fall 2009, it was announced that he would be cast as the new character Tucker on the soap opera The Young and the Restless. However, his presence in the show was short, however, as it has been announced the role of Tucker was being recast with Stephen Nichols replacing Russ in the role. He then became the star of the comedy web-series Home at Last. In his personal life, Russ is married to actress Clare Wren, with whom he had a daughter and son, and enjoys downhill skiing and windsurfing.

On Criminal MindsEdit

Russ portrayed killer father Donald Collins in the Season Seven episode A Family Affair.


  • Jonestown (2013) as Leo Ryan (short)
  • 90210 (2011-2013) as Salty (3 episodes)
  • Vegas (2012) as Mert Hayes (2 episodes)
  • NCIS (2012) as Philip Wickes
  • Awake (2012) as Jim Mayhew
  • Criminal Minds - A Family Affair (2012) TV episode - Donald Collins
  • California Solo (2012) as Rusty
  • Home at Last (2011-2012) as Bob Snow (6 episodes)
  • Green Guys (2011) as Peter Donnelly
  • Home at Last (2011) as Bob (video short)
  • Leverage (2011) as Morris Beck
  • The Defenders (2011) as EMT Carrick
  • The Whole Truth (2010) as Bridgeport Detective
  • 1,001 Ways to Enjoy the Missionary Position (2010) as Evan
  • The Event (2010) as Officer Nugent (2 episodes)
  • Make It or Break It (2010) as Walter
  • A Fork in the Road (2010) as Detective Ross
  • Cold Case (2010) as Tim Hudson, 2010
  • Death Bed: The Bed That Eats as Sharon's Brother (credited as Rusty Russ)
  • The Young and the Restless (2009-2010) as Tucker McCall (20 episodes)
  • The Mentalist (2009) as Dooley Gerber
  • The Ex List (2008-2009) as Jimmy Bloom (9 episodes)
  • Pawn (2009) as Justin Elliot Randolph (short)
  • Gary's Walk (2009) as Vernon
  • Boston Legal (2005-2008) as A.D.A. Christopher Palmer (5 episodes)
  • Wildfire (2008) as Congressman Dean Nichols (3 episodes)
  • CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2007) as Jonah Quinn
  • Standoff (2007) as Warren Keegan
  • Numb3rs (2007) as Michael Shannon
  • Ghost Whisperer (2007) as Bill Bristow
  • Demons (2007) as Senator Carney
  • Reunion (2006) as Congress Clark (2 episodes)
  • Just Legal (2006) as Bartender
  • The Sopranos (2006) as Paul Calviano
  • Without a Trace (2005) as Max Cassidy
  • The West Wing (2005) as Dan
  • NYPD Blue (2004) as Hal Matheson
  • JAG (2004) as Marine General Earl Watson (2 episodes)
  • CSI: NY (2004) as Mr. Prescott
  • Deadwood (2004) as Otis Russell (2 episodes)
  • Silver Lake (2004) as Phil Patterson
  • Finding John Christmas (2003) as Hank McAllister
  • The Brotherhood of Poland, New Hampshire (2003) as Reverend Deeker
  • Dragnet (2003) as Ted Paris
  • Mister Sterling (2003) as Tommy Doyle (9 episodes)
  • Robbery Homicide Division (2002) as Elliot Ayers
  • MDs (2002) as James Wiles
  • Crossing Jordan (2002) as D.A. Jack Olson
  • The Division (2002) as Jesse Whalen
  • Touched by an Angel (2001) as Prof. Thomas North
  • Buck Naked Arson (2001) as Ranger Joe Lightcap
  • Blackout (2000) as David Robbins
  • Level 9 (2000) as Deputy Director John Colter
  • Ally McBeal (2000) as Michael Bassett (2 episodes)
  • Boy Meets World (1993-2000) as Alan Matthews (154 episodes)
  • The Test of Love (1999) as Marc Whitman
  • Come On, Get Happy: The Partridge Family Story (1999) as Joseph Bonaduce
  • Replacing Dad (1999) as George Marsh
  • A Secret Life (1999) as Mark Whitman
  • American History X (1998) as Dennis Vinyard
  • When Danger Follows You Home (1997) as Detective Tyler Barnes
  • Stargate SG-1 (1997) as Captain Jonas Hanson
  • Night Sins (1997) as Sheriff Steiger
  • Nash Bridges (1996) as Scott Lamont/"The Monk"
  • A Husband, a Wife and a Lover (1996) as Art Maskin
  • Have You Seen My Son (1996) as Van Stein
  • Trail of Tears (1995) as David
  • Legend (1995) as Wild Bill Hickock
  • The Marshal (1995) as Loyal Truscott
  • Big Dreams & Broken Hearts: The Dottie West Story (1995) as Bill West
  • Viper (1994) as Mr. Townsend
  • SeaQuest 2032 (1993) as Rusty Thomas (uncredited)
  • CBS Schoolbreak Special (1993) as Coach Jim Doane
  • The Adventures of Brisco County Jr. (1993) as Jack Randolph
  • Aspen Extreme (1993) as Dave Ritchie
  • Traces of Red (1992) as Michael Dobson
  • Middle Ages (1992) as Terry Hannon (3 episodes)
  • Sexual Advances (1992) as Jack French
  • Drive Like Lightning (1992) as Boll Donner
  • Bay City Story (1992) as Jim Malone
  • Crazy from the Heart (1991) as Dewey Whitcomb
  • Gabriel's Fire (1991) as Brad Fixx
  • Pastime (1990) as Roy Dean Bream
  • A Promise to Keep (1990) as Carl
  • Capital News (1990) as Redmond Dunne (13 episodes)
  • Capital News (1990) as Redmond Dunn
  • Wiseguy (1988-1990) as Roger LoCocco (14 episodes)
  • Nasty Boys (1989-1990) as Ben Farlow (2 episodes)
  • ABC TGIF (1900) as Alan
  • Nasty Boys (1989) as Ben Farlow
  • Disorganized Crime (1989) as Nick Bartkowski
  • The Unholy (1988) as Luke
  • The Loner (1988) as Jake Willis
  • Tour of Duty (1987) as Sgt. Earl Ray Michaels
  • Dead of Winter (1987) as Rob Sweeney
  • Houston: The Legend of Texas (1986) as William Travis
  • Wanted: Dead or Alive (1986) as Det. Danny Quintz
  • Crime Story (1986) as Det. Wes Connelly
  • Second Serve (1986) as Josh
  • Blood & Orchids (1986) as Lloyd Murdoch
  • St. Elsewhere (1986) as Patrick O'Casey (2 episodes)
  • The Long Hot Summer (1985) as Jody Varner
  • Beer (1985) as Merle Draggett
  • Command 5 (1985) as J.D. Smith
  • Hunter (1985) as Jack Lachman
  • Miami Vice (1985) as Evan Freed
  • Riptide (1985) as Mack McPherson
  • MacGruder and Loud (1985) as Owen
  • Courage (1984) as Sonny
  • The Right Stuff (1983) as Slick Goodlin
  • V (1983) as Brad
  • Remington Steele (1983) as Chance McCormick
  • The Dukes of Hazzard (1982) as Scroggins
  • Rehearsal for Murder (1982) as Frank Heller
  • CBS Library (1982) as Rattlesnake
  • The Border (1982) as Jimbo
  • Cattle Annie and Little Britches (1981) as Little Dick Raidler
  • Crisis at Central High (1981) as J.O. Powell
  • Cruising (1980) as Paul Gaines
  • Just You and Me, Kid (1979) as Demesta
  • Another World (1964) as Burt McGowan (1978)


  • Lizzie McGuire (2003) - 1 episode
  • Rude Awakening (2000) - 1 episode
  • Boy Meets World (1998-2000) - 9 episodes


For an up-to-date filmography, see here.

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