Oct. 26, 2010 -- Hollywood stars, watch your back: Just in time for Halloween, there's a gang of goons out to get you -- that is, if you believe Randy and Evi Quaid.
The Oscar-nominated actor and his wife fled to Canada last week, claiming they feared for their lives. The supposed clan they're dodging seems like something more appropriate for a B-level horror movie than real life -- a group called the "Hollywood star whackers," who the Quaids claim murdered actors Heath Ledger and David Carradine.
Ledger died of a drug overdose in 2008; Carradine was found dead last year, apparently from accidental asphyxiation. Randy Quaid and Ledger worked together on 2005's "Brokeback Mountain." He and Carradine appeared in the 1980 movie "The Long Riders."
"Hollywood is murdering its movie stars," Evi Quaid said in Vancouver last week. "Randy has known eight close friends murdered in odd, strange manners. ... We feel that we're next."
No one else in Hollywood appears to have ever talked about a group called the Hollywood star whackers.
But the Quaids have more tangible problems than a supposed star-killing clan. They're wanted in California for allegedly skipping out on a hefty hotel bill and vandalizing a house they once owned. They fled north of the border earlier this month, were arrested in Vancouver on outstanding warrants from California and were released on $10,000 bail.
The couple is due to appear before the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Board Thursday, according to the Vancouver Sun.
A judge last week issued two $50,000 arrest warrants for the Quaids, who were no-shows at a California court hearing related to their arrests last month on suspicion that they illegally squatted at the guest house of a Montecito home they once owned. Evi and Randy Quaid each face a felony vandalism charge.
The U.S. attorney for the Quaids declined ABCNews.com's request for comment. A Vancouver-based attorney for the couple did not immediately respond to ABCNews.com's requests for comment, nor did Randy Quaid's younger brother, actor Dennis Quaid. But in court last week, the Canadian attorney, Brian Tsuji, read a single-sentence statement from the Quaids:
"We are requesting asylum from Hollywood star whackers," he read, declining to elaborate on the mental condition of his clients.
Randy and Evi Quaid: Latest Stars to Offer Bizarre Excuse
The Quaids' legal troubles first surfaced in 2009 when they were arrested in Texas for allegedly skipping out on a $10,000 bill from a posh hotel in Santa Barbara, Calif.
The arrest seemed to kick off a downward spiral of missed court dates, mug shots and accusations that they moved back into a house they once owned and then trashed the place.
"It amounts to pretending that something distressing doesn't exist, otherwise called denial," said Paul S. Appelbaum, a psychiatrist and professor of psychiatry, medicine and law at Columbia University in New York City. "At some level, most people will register that the summons to appear in court is for them, but it's what the mind does with that information that's important."
Another factor that can create a no-show mindset is how much they once got away with, he said. "People who are talented, smart or athletically gifted are often allowed to avoid unpleasant realities," said Appelbaum, noting it might be something as simple as being excused from chores because you're in a school play.
Jim Cohen, a professor of criminal law at Fordham Law School in New York City whose expertise is psychology and criminal law, said, "Once you feel entitled, it's very hard to think of yourself as unentitled, even if you're not in demand or fielding phone calls. People who consider themselves entitled are not happy being told what to do." (Neither Appelbaum nor Cohen have a personal connection to the Quaids.)
The couple wasn't always so troubled. Randy Quaid, 60, was once considered a talented actor, well-known for his roles in the "National Lampoon" series of comedies as well as "Independence Day" and "Brokeback Mountain," for which he earned an Oscar nomination.
Evi Quaid, 47, a photographer and filmmaker, married Randy Quaid in 1989.
The Quaids are the latest members of Hollywood to come up with a bizarre explanation for unlawful behavior.
Actor Jeremy London claimed in June that he was kidnapped, held at gunpoint and forced to smoke marijuana.
When his family said his story was indicative of his substance abuse issues, London slapped them with cease-and-desist orders and released a video statement to RadarOnline.com in which he declared, "They told a bunch of lies saying this never happened. I haven't even seen them in six months. They have no idea what's going on."
ABC News' Sarah Netter and Coeli Carr contributed to this story.