He may play an immortal vampire on television, but he's helping to fight a very human condition in real life.
Daniel Gillies, who plays fan favorite Elijah on the hit CW series The Vampire Diaries, is raising awareness for Isaias Quintana, a 2-year-old boy battling a rare form of cancer, and is reaching out to his fans to help make a difference.
Though he's currently filming his new series for NBC, Saving Hope, Daniel found some time to talk with us about the foundation he started for Isaias and his mission to raise $10,000 for the boy and his family. Plus, he also teases Elijah's return in the "tragic" Vampire Diaries finale...
While attending a fundraiser for the True Hearts organization at the Los Angeles Children's Hospital, Daniel and his wife, actress Rachel Leigh Cook, were introduced to Isaias, whom he calls "so stinkin' cute," and his family. "I met this little boy who just broke my heart because I could see there was a fragility in the child," he explains. "We had to be careful playing with him and he had to wear a crash-helmet. He's an adorable boy. Of course, naturally I inquired about his health and condition, just to learn about the disease."
Daniel learned that Isaias has neuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer that occurs in infancy and attacks the adrenal glands, neck, chest and abdomen. Daniel knew knew nothing the disease—which affects approximately 1 out of 100,000 children according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine—before meeting the 2-year-old.