While studying communications at Toronto's Seneca College, Russell's acting instructor suggested he seriously take up an acting career. From there he auditioned and was selected to be part of a summer program at the University of Toronto, in conjunction with Theatre Ontario. Following the end of that program, Russell went to Los Angeles for a year and did some private studying and theatre performance. Once back in Toronto, Russell spent another three years at a private acting studio where he was mentored in classical studies varying from Italian Comedia, Comedy Francais to British Farce and Drama. After a short period of performing, he again returned to studying at the world-renowned Second City and completed their six level program in improvisation. In 2004, Russell was one of three male actors selected from across Canada to participate in the prestigious private program Women in the Directors Chair, at the Banff Arts Centre.
Russell now makes his home in Toronto.