In the 1950s, she worked as a BBC production assistant to famed director Rudolph Cartier. She worked on all three Quatermass serials as well as the 1954 adaptation of George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four.
In 1965, she directed "Come Buttercup, Come Daisy, Come...?", an episode of Out of the Unknown, a science-fiction series. In 1966, she directed her first Doctor Who story, The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve. Following this, she directed episodes of Pere Goriot, Little Women, Softly, Softly: Taskforce, Z-Cars and The Moonstone before returning to Doctor Who with Invasion of the Dinosaurs, Pyramids of Mars and Horror of Fang Rock, in 1974, 1975 and 1977 respectively, to direct the Third and Fourth Doctors.
Russell was not only the first woman to direct a Doctor Who story, but also, along with Julia Smith, one of the first two women to work as a director for the BBC. She died peacefully in north Yorkshire where she had retired to the village of Oxenhope. She was in her 90th year.
Doctor Who stories directed Edit
- Internet Movie Database at the