Helen Mirren Impersonates Queen Elizabeth for Cancer-Stricken Boy

The actress steps in after the British royal could not fulfill 10-year-old Oliver Burton's wish to meet her.
Helen Mirren in "The Audience."
Johan Persson

After Queen Elizabeth reportedly turned down tea with 10-year-old Oliver Burton, who is battling leukemia, Dame Helen Mirren granted his wish.

The actress, who is starring as the Queen in Peter Morgan's production of The Audience at London's Gielgud Theatre, invited Oliver and his family to see the show last week. They also had tea, sandwiches and Mirren knighted the boy with her hand. The meeting was arranged through the U.K.-based charity National Children's Tumours Leukaemia Cancer Trust when Buckingham Palace could not meet a request for a visit with Oliver, reported the Leicester Mercury website.

"Dame Helen was brilliant," his mother, Catherine Burton, was quoted as saying. "She stayed in character the whole time and spent a lot of time talking to Oliver and drawing him out of himself. ... She signed his British flag, which he waves all the time."

She added: "Even now, if you ask him who he met recently, he smiles and waves the flag. He believes he met the real Queen and that's fine by us."

Oliver, who has Down's Syndrome, was diagnosed with leukemia seven years ago. He fought the disease three times and relapsed earlier this month.

See more pictures on the charity's Facebook page at the link.

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