Helen Mirren Plays Queen for Boy With Terminal Cancer
After Queen Elizabeth II said no to a dying boy’s wish to visit Buckingham Palace, Helen Mirren, who’s currently playing Her Majesty onstage, stepped in and made his dream come true. Dame Mirren, we love you even more now.
Apparently, the Queen declined to meet 10-year-old Oliver Burton, who suffers from Down’s syndrome and terminal spine and bone marrow cancer. So Mirren invited Burton and his family backstage after a performance of Peter Morgan’s ‘The Audience’ at the Gielgud Theatre in London.
Then, Mirren (as the Queen) had footmen serve tea and cakes. She even took the time to “knight” the boy and introduce him to her Corgis.
“She stayed in character for the whole thing. Oliver thought she was the real Queen, and, well, that’s good enough for us,” said Burton’s father James Brown.
Burton has been battling leukemia for most of his life and was first diagnosed with the disease at age three. This is his third bout with cancer and, according to doctors, he may have only weeks or months to live, which makes Mirren’s extraordinary gesture even more touching.
“She was really lovely. She did the whole thing — had a butler there, was dressed in costume and did it all properly for him,” added Brown.
Perhaps the real Queen should give Mirren a special commendation for dogood-ery.