seaQuest DSV was an American science fiction television series created by Rockne S. O'Bannon. It originally aired on NBC between 1993 and 1996. In its final season, it was renamed seaQuest 2032. Set in "the near future", seaQuest DSV originally mixed high drama with realistic scientific fiction. It originally starred film star Roy Scheider as Captain Nathan Bridger, designer and commander (for the first two seasons) of the titular naval submarine seaQuest DSV 4600. Other actors who comprised the show's original cast were Jonathan Brandis as Lucas Wolenczak, a teenaged computer genius, Stephanie Beacham as Kristin Westphalen, the chief medical officer and head of the seaQuest science department and Don Franklin as Commander Jonathan Ford, the first mate of the submarine. Michael Ironside starred as Captain Oliver Hudson, captain of the vessel during the third season. Steven Spielberg expressed interest in the project and served as one of the show's executive producers during the first two seasons.
Filming of the first season was marked by disputes between the producers and NBC, changes in the production staff, and even an earthquake. The second season contained changes in the cast, as well as disputes between cast members and producers, while the third season introduced a new lead actor and title. While initially popular, the series began to decline in ratings throughout its run, and was abruptly canceled in the middle of its third season.
Roy Scheider narrated the voiceover during the opening credits of each first-season episode:
The 21st century: mankind has colonized the last unexplored region on Earth; the ocean. As captain of the seaQuest and its crew, we are its guardians, for beneath the surface lies the future.