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Busy Moore takes time to sing local costar's praises

In town yesterday to promote her new CD "Wild Hope," Mandy Moore was busy. The 23-year-old saw kids at Children's Hospital, performed at a concert sponsored by Mix 98.5 FM, and hit a book signing at Borders. Moore can be seen on the big screen in "License to Wed" opposite Robin Williams and Newton native John Krasinski, whom Moore raved about. "He's fantastic." said Moore. "I got to meet his parents. They play his parents in the movie. They obviously raised him right."

Mad about 'Mad Men'
John Slattery is a busy man in Hollywood these days. The Boston native was last seen playing shifty politico Victor Lang, new hubby of Eva Longoria's Gaby Solis, on "Desperate Housewives" and is now playing mysterious ad man Roger Sterling on the new AMC show "Mad Men." "I finished 'Desperate Housewives' last season on the same day I started this," Slattery says of the cable drama, which premieres this Thursday at 10. A familiar face from shows like "Sex and the City" and "Will and Grace," Slattery isn't finished with Wisteria Lane just yet: he'll be back for the first half of the fourth season. Meanwhile, he hopes viewer response to "Mad Men" will mirror that of the critics. "Every single review that's been written about this show has been good. I've never been in a show like that," says Slattery. Chatting at an appropriately old Hollywood retro party at the Friars Club in Beverly Hills to launch "Mad Men," the St. Sebastian's alum says he gets back to town often to visit his family and to see the Red Sox. He also wants to get back to his roots another way: by reteaming with Pulitzer Prize - winning "Rabbit Hole" playwright and Southie native David Lindsey-Abaire. Slattery starred in the 2006 Tony Award nominee on Broadway. "I'm trying to get him to write a Boston play for me."

Kennedy baby news
Congrats to documentary filmmaker Rory Kennedy, the youngest of Bobby and Ethel Kennedy's 11 children, and her husband, Mark Bailey, on the birth of their third child. Zachary Corkland Kennedy-Bailey arrived at 9:47 a.m. yesterday at the NYU Medical Center in Manhattan, weighing 8 pounds, 10 ounces. He joins big sisters Georgia Elizabeth, 4, and Bridget Katherine, 3, and is Ethel's 32 d grandchild.

Poker's lucky 13
Another year, another heretofore unknown New Englander cashing out in the $10,000 No-Limit Texas Hold 'Em tournament at the World Series of Poker. Retiree William Spadea, 60, of South Easton busted out in 13th place for a $429,114 payday early yesterday , missing his chance at tonight's $8.5 million top prize. Still, Spadea outlasted more than 6,300 competitors over eight days . It was Spadea's first World Series -- a heart attack kept him home last year -- and now he says he's going pro. "My brother told me I was nuts to spend the $10,000, but I really thought I could at least get in the money," said the divorced father of five . Indeed, he left in the dust New Hampshire-born sibling pros Howard Lederer and Annie Duke, and Wellesley native Phil Laak, boyfriend of actress Jennifer Tilly. All busted out on their first day, while Wayland's Bernard Lee (who finished 13th in 2005 ) lasted into day two. After Spadea, the next best showing for a New Englander was fellow amateur Avi Cohen, a 35-year-old partner in a Boston financial brokerage, who finished in 43 d place for $237,865 .

A boxer's benefit bout s
Boxer "Irish" Micky Ward is managing to stay busy as he waits for the cameras to start rolling. The Lowell native, whose pugilistic past will be the subject of a movie starring Mark Wahlberg and Matt Damon, is planning an evening of amateur boxing at the Roxy July 25. Proceeds from the fight night will benefit Ward and Wahlberg's respective charities. "Mark's a busy guy, but he's gonna try and be there, " Ward told us yesterday. For someone whose life story is about to be told by two Hollywood heavies, Ward is remarkably unfazed. Called "The Fighter" the bloody biopic is being directed by Darren Aronofsky. Asked which boxing pic he prefers, Ward mentioned Franco Zeffirelli's "The Champ," which starred Jon Voight and Faye Dunaway. "But that was a sad one," said Ward. "Mine might have sad parts, but it won't all be sad."

Legend tops Hot Stove
Organizers of the annual Hot Stove, Cool Music event at Fenway got themselves a real headliner this year. Word is Grammy-winner John Legend has accepted an invite to perform at the Aug. 24 concert. The R&B singer, who's a favorite of Sox slugger David Ortiz, tops a bill that will also include Bill Janovitz and Buffalo Tom; Kay Hanley; Celts CEO Wyc Grousbeck's band French Lick, and Hot Stove All-Stars Peter Gammons and Sox GM Theo Epstein.

Dice-K's fish story
Sox pitching ace Daisuke Matsuzaka had lunch yesterday at Anthony's Pier 4 with a TV crew from Japan. We're told Dice-K ordered the clam chowder and the lobster Savannah.

Smells like more money
Another day, another endorsement deal for Tom Brady's sweetheart. Gisele Bundchen was at Saks Fifth Avenue in New York yesterday to launch the new Dolce & Gabbana fragrance called "The One." We're not sure what it smells like, but probably not pigskin, right? Brady and Bundchen, by the way, apparently will not be in Costa Rica Friday to celebrate the supermodel's 27th birthday. The couple cancel ed the trip because Brady's ex, Bridget Moynahan, is due to deliver his baby around then.

Sarah Rodman of the Globe staff and Globe correspondent Steve Friess contributed. Names can be reached at names@globe.com or at 617-929-8253.

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