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Their star is born (they hope)

(Josh Reynolds for the Boston Globe)

Like most of the more than 500 hopefuls at Boston Casting's open call for the Steve Martin movie "Pink Panther 2," Mitchell Crank went looking for a chance to ply his craft in Boston. The recent New England Institute of Art grad has already benefited from having more movies filming in town, including appearing in a scene with Kevin Spacey for the blackjack movie "21" and working for a few days on "The Great Debaters," the Denzel Washington-directed movie that filmed last month. Clark, who works as a waiter at Hamersley's Bistro in the South End, talked his colleague, manager Hillary Blank into going to Saturday's casting session. "They filmed 'Bachelor No. 2' right next door to us last week, so when this came up, I thought I would try," Blank told us. When "Pink Panther 2" starts filming in Boston after Labor Day, it will be the third major movie simultaneously shooting in town. (Dane Cook and Kate Hudson's "Bachelor No. 2" and "The Women," starring Meg Ryan and Annette Bening, have been filming for the last week.) And in other "Pink Panther" news, word out of Europe is that Oscar winner Helen Mirren is the latest star to be added to the flick currently filming in Paris.

Heating up the Hot Stove


"American Idol" finalist Ayla Brown debuted the dance pop single "Absolutely Everybody" at the Hot Stove, Cool Music show. The Boston College basketball player and Wrentham native also trotted out her beau, fellow BC student-athlete Chris Kowalski of Dorchester, to the Fenway Park fund-raiser. More than $300,000 was raised for eight local charities, to be distributed through event organizer Red Sox GM Theo Epstein 's Foundation to Be Named Later. One winning auction bidder paid $25,000 to sit with Theo in his private suite during a Sox game this season. A First Act guitar that was signed by Sox slugger David Ortiz, who helped create the design on the body, went for $5,000. Among those sticking around for the afterparty at Game On! were headliner John Legend, the night's emcee, Mike O'Malley, Kay Hanley, Epstein, and his fellow organizer, baseball guru Peter Gammons.

Mum's the word
If Bridget Moynahan and Tom Brady's baby has a name, they aren't saying. But others seem to think the new arrival will be called John. Just as Friday night's Patriots game against the Carolina Panthers was getting underway, game analyst Dan Dierdorf announced John as the name, which was also the name used by some of Brady's teammates when they were talking to reporters later. Moynahan, a Longmeadow native, gave birth to the baby boy last Wednesday in Santa Monica, Calif. Reached yesterday, the new mom's people were mum about the new addition's handle. Brady, who flew to the West Coast to see his son but was back in North Carolina for the game, skipped his usual postgame press conference. "We're just happy that everything went well, and it's a healthy baby," Brady's friend and backup QB Matt Cassel told People magazine. Pats linebacker Chad Brown, a father himself, said he told Brady his whole life is going to change. "He said, 'It's changed already.' " As for whether the team will do anything special for the baby, Brown told People: "A football team is not quite a ladies reading club."

Camerota misses Boston
What's appealing about Provincetown is that you never know who -- or what -- you might run into. The other day, we caught up with Alisyn Camerota, who, you may recall, left Boston a few years back bound for the Fox mothership. Vacationing on the outer Cape with her husband and three children, the "Fox and Friends" anchor told us she misses her old stomping grounds. (Camerota was here for a decade, first at channel 7 and then as the New England correspondent for Fox. "I miss Boston every single day, and if there was some way to get back there, I would," she said. Camerota, who's up and at 'em every day at 3:15 a.m., admits she's not wild about her schedule. "I want to shoot myself every morning," she says, "but by 4:30 a.m., we're having a good time." And about Fox's rep as the network for Republicans, she says it's nonsense. "That's painting with a broad brush," she says. "We just tell stories differently than the other networks, and people have paid us the highest form of flattery by copying us."

No joke, Conan wants him
When Shane Mauss scored his first appearance on Conan O'Brien's show in March, he'd just won "best comic" at HBO's US Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colo., and was expecting a break or two to come his way. But when O'Brien's bookers called to invite the Boston comic for a second appearance tonight, he was caught off guard. In fact, he was cleaning his apartment. Without thinking, Mauss went to his datebook to see if he could make it, which seemed to amuse Conan's staff. "I'm fishing around through my calendar, and I hear him laughing on the other line to the other Conan booker, 'He's checking his availability,' " says Mauss. "And that kind of snapped me out of it. I was like, oh yeah, I'm available."

Hancock jazzes up bill
Herbie Hancock has been added to the already stellar lineup for the Sept. 28 concert jazz impresario George Wein has organized to establish a scholarship in the name of his late wife and muse, Joyce Alexander Wein, who died in 2005. Hancock, who played the Berklee Performance Center on Saturday, will join Roy Haynes, Branford Marsalis, Jon Faddis, Joe Lovano, Lizz Wright, Geri Allen, Regina Carter, Toshiko Akiyoshi, and Lew Tabackin. The Symphony Hall concert is part of the seventh annual BeanTown Jazz Festival.

Globe correspondent Nick A. Zaino III contributed. Names can be reached at names@globe.com or at 617-929-8253.

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