Batter Up for Crystal

04/13/1998 at 12:00 AM EDT

Billy Crystal took his upcoming HBO movie, "61*," which he produced and directed, to the White House Monday night for an all-star preview. The Washington Post reports that besides the comic-turned-filmmaker himself, the audience included President Bush, AOL Time Warner honchos Steve Case and Gerald Levin (HBO, like PEOPLE, is owned by AOL Time Warner) and possibly the most honored guest of all, Pat Maris, 65, the widow of New York Yankee Roger Maris. She attended with her son, Roger Maris Jr., 43. The film airs on the pay-cable network on April 28 and dramatizes the on- and off-the-field struggles of Maris and teammate Mickey Mantle as they attempted to shatter Babe Ruth's 1927 single-season record of 60 home runs. Maris, who died in 1985, broke Babe's record by hitting his 61st home run on Oct. 1, 1961. "He really is a good one to do the movie," Pat Maris told The Post about Crystal, "because he knows baseball and cares about the way it will be done."

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