Arquette appeared in Sacramento on Tuesday in an American-flag-print karate uniform to promote a series of online videos opposing Proposition 23.
Producers say the spots are aimed at young voters who might not be won over by traditional campaign advertising.
In a video titled "Don't Mess With California," Arquette portrays California and proceeds to knock out a group of thugs representing Texas oil interests.
Oil companies have donated the bulk of the money to support Proposition 23. The measure would indefinitely suspend California's 2006 law mandating significant emissions reductions by 2020.