‘I’ve led a very blessed life’: Jason Priestley on giving back, the ‘90210’ revival and missing Luke Perry

By Sarah Trumbley

If there’s one thing Jason Priestley understands, it’s the importance of giving back! And as the ambassador for this year’s annual suit drive at Moores – one of Canada’s leading men’s retailers – that’s exactly what he’s doing.

“I’ve led a very blessed life and have afforded a lot of opportunities, which is why I think it’s incredibly important to give back,” said the 49-year-old Private Eyes star, who is always trying to teach the importance of charity to his children. Jason shares daughter Ava, 12, and son Dashiell, 10 with his wife Naomi.

“It's beneficial to your community, it's beneficial to your country, it's beneficial to you. And I feel that those are the things we need to teach our children,” he continued.

Jason brought a suit to donate to the cause at Moores’ flagship store in Toronto on July 9! Photo: © George Pimentel/Getty Images

While kicking off Moores’ 10th Annual Suit Drive in Toronto, the Vancouver-born star set some time aside to chat with Hello! Canada. He spoke what it means to be part of such an amazing event – one he’s admired for many years.

“Ever since I learned about it, I thought, ‘That makes a ton of sense.’ Because Moores makes it really easy to be charitable, which to me, is always the key to getting people to be charitable. You got to make it easy for them, right?” explained the philanthropic actor.

“And all you have to do is bring a lightly used piece of business attire into any Moores store across Canada – 126 locations! – and donate it to some people who are down on their luck. It’s a beautiful, full-circle way to recycle your clothing and help someone in need.”

MORE: Private Eyes star Jason Priestley on Canadian pride and returning to the director’s chair

Jason played high school heartthrob Brandon Walsh on Beverly Hills, 90210 from 1990 to 2000. Of course, we couldn’t sit down him without asking about the upcoming revival, BH90210 (premiering Aug. 7 on Global).

Jason (second from left) celebrated the 200th episode of Beverly Hills, 90210 with (L-R) Brian Austin Green, Tiffani-Amber Thiessen, Tori Spelling, Jennie Garth, Kathleen Roberts and Ian Ziering in 1997. Photo; © Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

“I never thought this would happen, never in a million years!” he admitted as he gushed about reuniting with his former co-stars Shannen Doherty, Tori Spelling, Jennie Garth, Brian Austin Green, Ian Ziering and Gabrielle Carteris. “It's been super fun for me. I was friendly with everyone from the cast, so when we started working together again it was like putting on an old pair of slippers.”

Sadly, though, the cast is missing one cherished member – Luke Perry, who passed away in March from a massive stroke. Jason said being back on set just isn’t the same without him.

Luke’s final role was in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which premiered this week in Los Angeles. He reportedly got roaring applause for his acting in the film. Photo: © Dominik Bindl/Getty Images

“The whole process of making the show without Luke has been difficult,” he said. “He was a huge part of our 90210 family. He was a big personality and a big presence, and definitely him not being there has left a vacancy.”

He reminisced about filming his very first scenes with Luke, who played bad boy Dylan McKay on the series, and added: “Even though it was 30 years ago, it really feels like yesterday to me – I still remember all the days we spent filming together at Leo Carrillo beach and driving in his little black bathtub Porsche. Luke was a big part of my life, not only that chapter of my life, but my life currently.”

You can donate to the Moores Annual Suit Drive until July 31 at any Moores store across Canada.

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