1. ITV Report

Iron Man thrills children with surprise visit

Iron Man actor Robert Downey Jr. meets seven-year-old Ethan Miller Credit: Ian West/PA Wire

Hollywood actor Robert Downey Jr amazed children at Great Ormond Street Hospital by making a surprise visit to their cancer ward.

The Iron Man actor, 51, was in London ahead of the European premiere of Captain America: Civil War on Tuesday, but took time out to visit young patients and their families.

Ethan Miller, a seven-year-old fan who suffers from a rare blood disease as well as type 1 diabetes, was “over the moon” to meet the American star.

Ethan has been in and out of hospital a lot in the past three years. He watches the films all the time and virtually lives in his Iron Man costume. Ethan was over the moon to meet his hero and it has really helped to lift his spirits.

– Lee Miller, Ethan's father
Seven-year-old Denisa Kapsalis meets the Hollywood actor Credit: Ian West/PA Wire
Robert Downey Jr meets Michael (surname not given), aged 7 Credit: Ian West/PA Wire

Robert Downey Jr has played Tony Stark (aka Iron Man) since 2008, but it’s not the first time the actor has used his fame to surprise young fans.

Last year the actor visited Alex Pring – a then seven-year-old, who was born with a partially developed right arm. Showing up as Tony Stark, he presented Alex with a bionic Iron Man arm and called him “the most dapper 7-year-old [he’s] ever met.”

The Iron Man star was in London and met Chloe Bowers, aged 5 from Ruislip Credit: Ian West/PA Wire

Great Ormond Street Hospital is one of the world's leading children's units, treating young patients with rare, complex and life-threatening conditions.