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Russ is the United States Environmental Protection Agency's administrator and describes himself as a rich and successful man assigned to the least successful department of the government. He is first seen after a mutated squirrel is captured in Springfield, and presents it to President Schwarzenegger. He then proposes five different solutions to the mass pollution in Springfield and the result is a giant glass dome placed over the town. He appears to the townsfolk via a giant holographic screen and explains that because Springfield has become the most polluted town on the Earth, the government has decided to contain it. Later, the Simpsons escape the dome, and Russ orders extreme and somewhat strange measures to be taken in support of the containment of the town and towards the capture of the Simpsons. One of his henchmen responds by claiming, "Sir I'm afraid you've gone mad with power!" to which Cargill responds, "Of course I have. Have you ever tried going mad without power? It's boring; no one listens to you."
Cargill later appears once again discussing with the president, about a solution to dispose of Springfield and takes advantage of Schwarzenegger's attitude towards reading plans, tricking him into choosing a particular plan, which is to destroy Springfield. Later, Russ appears at a train station in Seattle after learning that Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie are on a train headed there and sends his troops in to capture them and return them to the dome. When the family are brought back after Homer's failed attempt to rescue them, Russ contacts the town once again via the screen and tells them that the EPA is going to destroy Springfield and everybody within the dome. A helicopter arrives, lifts a plug off the top of the dome and lowers a bomb on a rope in front of the now-destroyed City Hall. Russ impatiently oversees the countdown, and Cletus Spuckler distracts him so the townspeople can escape up the rope. Homer, who has climbed the outside of the dome, jumps through the hole and knocks everyone and the bomb off of the rope and accidentally brings forward the detonation timer, prompting Russ to disappear at this point. Once the bomb detonates outside the dome and shatters it, a worn and battered Cargill wielding a shotgun ambushes Homer and Bart at Springfield Gorge and prepares to kill them in a final attack, but he is pranked by Bart Simpson about the "Treasure of Ima Weiner" before he is suddenly knocked out by a large rock shoved off from a nearby ledge by Maggie before he can fire a single shot. He was later seen during the ongoing reconstruction.
 Behind the Laughter
In The Simpsons Movie, Russ Cargill is voiced by Albert Brooks. His character has gone through many changes over the course of its development. An early version of the White House scene in the movie (available as a deleted scene in The Simpsons Movie DVD) shows an older model of Russ Cargill, who is arguably less menacing and antagonistic than the current incarnation. The older version is also the version given out in Burger King Kid's Meals promoting the movie.
It was also originally intended for him to be defeated by President Schwarzenegger with a tree branch but it was changed to Maggie with a boulder.
Russ Cargill was not the first villain intended for the Simpsons Movie. The original villain was to be Hank Scorpio from the season 8 episode "You Only Move Twice", but was changed for an unknown reason.