*He has a hard outer shell but he’s more like a soft teddy bear on the inside. Tough guy rapper, 50 Cent recently signed up to be a bone marrow donor when he heard that young “Lion King” actress was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia.

Eleven-year-old Shannon Tavarez had a co-starring role as young Nala in the Broadway production of The Lion King. Her diagnosis made the rapper think of his own son.

“My son is just a couple years older than Shannon and I can’t imagine if his life was needlessly cut short when there is someone out there that could save him,” the rap star said in a statement.

“Shannon’s chances of finding a matching donor are slim because she’s African American and Dominican and minorities are underrepresented in the national registry,” he added. “Everyone, regardless of their race or ethnicity deserves a fair chance at life. Registering to become a bone marrow donor starts with a cheek swab but it’s more than that. It’s a commitment to save a life.”

Both 50 and fellow G-Unit member Tony Yayo registered with DKMS, the largest bone marrow registry in the world.

Check out video of Fiddy and Yayo becoming bone marrow donors: