Widely regarded as one of the most gritty and multi-faceted spin-offs in the Star Trek franchise, Deep Space Nine was the last Star Trek show still running when the cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation took to films and Star Trek: Voyager finally reached its journeys end. It's known for departing from the traditional episodic nature of the franchise and transitioning to a serialized format, which allowed for over-arching storylines and the ramifications to be felt from previous episodes.
In this way, a series about the various inhabitants of a space station orbiting a wormhole could still be one of exploration, it just dealt with traversing interpersonal relationships rather than deep space. With the psychological analysis of so many fascinating inhabitants of Deep Space 9, came rumors that the cast of main characters was one of the most fractious. There's more to know about them than just what we saw on the screen. Below are ten of their hidden details.
10 ALEXANDER SIDDIQ TANKED BASHIR'S PERFORMANCE
If you're paying attention to Doctor Bashir in the last few seasons of the show, you may notice a change in his demeanor. This is intentional; Alexander Siddiq wasn't happy with the alterations being made to his character, particularly the decision to make Bashir an "augmented" human, illegally altered to be gifted by his parents.
Later, he disliked being turned into a possible Dominion spy. This resulted in him tanking his performance, hoping it would affect ratings and force the writing team to change his character back to its original archetype. Among Star Trek fans of Deep Space Nine, Siddiq is regarded as the problem child of the cast.
9 MICHAEL DORN ALTERED WORF'S ACTING
The cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation is well known for being chummy. The cast regularly saw each other outside of working hours, and continue to be the best of friends. Coming from that environment to DS9, where everyone was committed to a deeply professional work environment affected Michael Dorn's acting style.
Worf was always a serious character, but due to the stiff nature on the set of DS9, where he was surrounded by theatrically trained actors (in the vein of Patrick Stewart), he had to make a conscious decision not to undue all of the progress Worf's character had made while on the Enterprise (i.e., become friendlier as the series progressed).
8 MARC ALAIMO WAS BASICALLY DUKAT
If you peruse the Star Trek Deep Space Nine Companion, a hefty coffee table book dedicated to details about the series, you'll find plenty of interviews and anecdotes with the main cast about the characters they play. Everything from their perspective on the character's psychology to what it was like getting into their prosthetics and makeup is included.
Marc Alaimo, known for playing the charming yet unscrupulous Cardassian warlord Gul Dukat, had such a hand in shaping Dukat that he became known for being as arrogant, petulant, and entitled as his character, inspiring ridicule and derision from his cast mates.
7 ODO IS BASED ON JAMES DEAN AND CLINT EASTWOOD
The lovable, grouchy constable aboard Deep Space Nine went through a few iterations before producers settled on the personality and demeanor they wanted Odo to have. They envisioned him as a combination between two loner-types, Clint Eastwood and James Dean.
Clint Eastwood because they wanted him to be reminiscent of a clench-teethed sheriff of the Old West, and James Dean because they wanted him to be moody due to an overwhelming sense of not belonging. Rene Auberjonois did his best approximation of the two, though they chose to not make him as good looking as either of those two actors.
6 SISKO INITIALLY COULDN'T SHAVE HIS HEAD
There have been many reasons why characters on Star Trek series have to look the way they do; originally Patrick Stewart was made to wear a toupee because of his hairline before TNG started filming, but that was soon scrapped for looking ridiculous and his baldness was embraced.
Meanwhile, Commander Sisko (Benjamin Brooks) wasn't allowed to shave his head for the first several seasons because the actor would look to similar to roles he'd previously played in films. By the fourth season he was permitted to do so after audiences became used to the character - he could even grow a beard.
5 JADZIA DAX WENT THROUGH SEVERAL CHANGES
The Trill species were first introduced in Star Trek: The Next Generation, but looked much different from Jadzia Dax, the main Trill host in DS9. In TNG, the Trill had ridges on their heads and no discernible "spots", but makeup artist Michael Westmore desired to streamline their appearance.
Jadzia Dax was also intended originally to be a character that was born on a planet with little gravity, requiring her to use a wheel chair when she was aboard Deep Space Nine. She could also "fly" only in her quarters when gravity controls were adjusted. This idea was scrapped, but given to a guest character in Season 2.
4 O'BRIEN'S UNIFORM WAS DIFFERENT THAN THE REST OF THE CREW
Colm Meaney originally had some trepidation about returning to the role of Miles O'Brien on DS9. He liked the freedom he had on Star Trek: The Next Generation as a reoccurring character, but not a part of the regular cast. However, his salary upgrade made him reconsider.
When he was fitted for his uniform, he requested two key changes as a non-commissioned officer; he wanted it to be cut with the ability for him to roll up his sleeves as a working man taking care of the ship, and he wanted it to have pockets for his tool.
3 NANA VISITOR WAS ACTUALLY PREGNANT AS KIRA
Whenever female cast members get pregnant during the course of a television show, adjustments need to be made in the storyline they're involved in to account for their changing bodies. One of the ways this was accomplished when Nana Visitor became pregnant in real life was to have Major Kira become pregnant as well.
Kira isn't made to be pregnant with her own child, but rather become the surrogate for the new baby of Miles and Keiko O'Brien. Nana Visitor was actually pregnant with her and Alexander Saddiq's (who played Doctor Bashir) baby, which she gave birth to during Season 5.
2 MAJOR KIRA WAS SUPPOSED TO BE RO LAREN
Originally the character of the Bajoran militia member and terrorist turned military leader of a liberated society wasn't Major Kira. It was going to be Ro Laren, the memorably hot-tempered Bajoran introduced on Star Trek: The Next Generation. That actress didn't want to do a Star Trek series again, and so the character of Kira was created.
At first Nana Visitor was skeptical of taking the part, especially at a time when doing episodic science fiction for television wasn't a prestige assignment. But she was convinced by the script, and the fact that Major Kira wasn't a helpmate female Star Trek character assisting the male leads, like Counselor Troi, Dr. Beverly Crusher, and Lieutenant Uhura.
1 JADZIA DAX WAS PREMATURELY KILLED OFF
A favorite character on the series, Jadzia Daz's untimely demise in Season 6 came as much of a shock to fans as to actress Terry Farrell who played her. Farrell had requested more time off, and to become a recurring character to allow her an easier schedule, but producers wouldn't go for it and decided to kill Dax instead.
The Dax Trill symbiant she carried would be transferred to a new host body (Ezri), who fans weren't particularly fond of. Especially since Jadzia had so recently married Worf, a union of two favorite characters. Her death also didn't offer any way for Farrell to return to the part for guest appearances on any other Star Trek series.