The Pitt Crew

The Brangelina merger branches out: Brad Pitt has asked to become the adoptive father of Angelina Jolie's children, according to the actor's publicist. A legal petition seeking to change the names of the children to Zahara Jolie-Pitt and Maddox Jolie-Pitt was filed yesterday in Los Angeles, publicist Cindy Guagenti said in a written statement to the Associated Press. Maddox, 4, and Zahara, about 10 months, were adopted by Jolie from Cambodia and Ethiopia. Screen stars Pitt, 41, and Jolie, 30, have been an item for about a year.

More Celeb Baby News . . .

The Baby Who May Be Violet (spawn of Bennifer) is but two days old, and already the child is generating massive buzz. Us Weekly announced Thursday that Jennifer Garner, wife of Ben Affleck, had given birth to a daughter sometime Wednesday night, eagerly awaited news picked up by multiple media outlets, including The Post in some editions.

But wait! Her publicist and his publicist are unanimous in declaring the time of birth at 6:26 p.m. (EST) Thursday. Affleck's rep, Ken Sunshine, told The Post yesterday that he was not pleased with the erroneous reports of the baby's arrival.

"What is this race to be the first when you know it's not true?" he asked. Sunshine said he received a slew of calls yesterday afternoon about the birth, but "all we said was we were not confirming anything."

He added, "People knew they were in the hospital and the paparazzi were calling to say that the baby was born. . . . I knew it wasn't true."

An Us Weekly publicist released a statement yesterday that said simply: "Congratulations to Ben and Jen on their new baby. We stand by our story."

Sunshine said Thursday's reporting was a "complete disregard for basic journalistic standards" and is "making all of celebrity journalism a joke." He refused to give any details on the baby and would not confirm the gender or name.

Guess that's going to be a slow rollout. Somebody get this kid an agent!

Hold the Baby Pictures, Tom

Hey, Tom -- you sure you want to be doing that? The Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography released a statement Thursday criticizing Tom Cruise's personal use of a sonogram machine, which the 43-year-old actor recently told Barbara Walters he had purchased for his pregnant fiancee, 26-year-old Katie Holmes.

"To do this over and over again on a child in your own home is just crazy," Jean Lea Spitz, a sonographer and president of the SDMS, said yesterday. "The whole idea of doing an ultrasound for fun has gone too far." Spitz says the machine's power levels have increased more than eight times since 1995, when safety studies were last conducted to determine the effects of sonograms on a fetus.

Spitz said the society's members have already received calls from parents-to-be asking where they can buy their own machine, which can cost as much as $200,000. "It's not worth the potential risk," she warned. "Sonography is best done by a credentialed sonographer in an accredited laboratory for medical reasons."

Cruise's publicist would not comment yesterday.

'Lost' to the Breath Test

Looks like a little star car trouble showing up on the police docket.

"Lost" stars Michelle Rodriguez and Cynthia Watros were arrested Wednesday on charges of driving under the influence of alcohol in Hawaii, the Associated Press reported yesterday. Police said both actresses, driving in separate cars, failed sobriety tests and were released Thursday on $500 bail each.

-- Korin Miller

Tom Cruise, left, with fiancee Katie Holmes: A home sonogram machine is a bad idea, says one professional.