It has been said that he first began working in films by working on the Al Christie comedy unit films in 1912. He then moved to Keystone where he began appearing in bit parts in the Mack Sennett films including those of Charles Chaplin.
In 1920, he began working as a film director for Hal Roach Studios, eventually moving back in front of the camera with his own series of shorts. He moved into sound films and was quite prolific. Made a notable appearance in the 1933 Laurel and Hardy feature film Sons of the Desert.
He was let go by Hal Roach due to his problem of adapting to feature films in 1936. He was hired by MGM where he spent the rest of his career.
It is said he had a problem with alcohol and he died of a heart attack in California on June 20, 1940.
He was the older brother of James Parrott.
- Anthony, Brian and Edmonds, Andy (1997). Smile When the Raindrops Fall: The Story of Charley Chase. Rowman & Littlefield.