It's always a difficult task picking and choosing which stars are or aren't on the A-list. It's not like Hollywood puts out an official list each year, and I'm not crazy about letting the gossip rags define for me who is and isn't among the best of the best. So, the following is based solely on my opinion, and will most certainly be up for debate. Basically, I made these choices based on the actor (or actress') recent track record, including box office take, and also took into account how valuable their name currently is to a film. Feel free to disagree ... or, even better, agree. That said, here are my choices for seven stars about to fall off the A-List:
Jake Gyllenhaal -- While it may take an actor awhile to land on the A-list, there is an express lane and that includes starring in one, over-the-top controversial film. For Gyllenhaal, as well as Heath Ledger, that movie was Brokeback Mountain. Unlike Ledger though (who decided to take a risk and play an iconic villain in next summer's The Dark Knight), Gyllenhaal followed up Brokeback with Proof, Jarhead and Zodiac. Granted, the last film won high praise from critics, but no one went to see it. What would it take for Gyllenhaal to remain on the A-List (and not slide into ensemble hell)? A high-profile romance might. An Oscar-worthy performance might. But Gyllenhaal is interested in neither at this point (Rendition? Eh?), so look for his star to slowly fade until someone convinces him to do Brokeback: The Prequel.
Reese Witherspoon -- And speaking of fading stars, Reese Witherspoon (who co-stars alongside Gyllenhaal in Rendition) has been falling faster than a sorority girl at a keg party. The gal broke onto the A-List following her Oscar-winning performance in Walk the Line, but then chose to follow it up with two bizarre comedies: Just Like Heaven and Penelope. The latter hit the festival circuit, then test screened for what felt like a year -- and, well, I don't even think it ever came out. At least not yet. Apart from Rendition, it appears she'll most likely go the Kate Hudson route: Just keep making romantic comedies until people stop going to see them. For those who absolutely loved films like Legally Blonde and Sweet Home Alabama, I guess that ain't such a bad thing.