Do you know everything about that Lily from AT&T? The pretty, geeky, sparkly lover-girl of one of America’s leading telecom companies?
Everybody stays with the remotes because there is much more to say about Milana Vayntrub, the actress bringing the character of Lily to life.
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First, let us start with something you may have yet to expect. Milana was born in a place that is not California but the old USSR, particularly Uzbekistan. At age two, Milana’s family was exiled from religious persecution via a grueling journey through Austria and Italy. The family finally landed in California. It’s an origin story that deserves a movie.
Milana has been acting since the age of five! She was not only in school plays, but she was, in fact, in commercials, even for Barbie. Yes, Barbie! She wasn’t doing it for the fame; it was just a way to earn money for her family.
However, the universe had other plans in store for her. At age eight, Milana won a part in the famous series “ER.” She was going head-to-head with Julianna Margulies and George Clooney. And not just any episode, but that directed by Mimi Leder, who later would direct blockbuster movies like “Deep Impact.”
After “ER,” our girl Milana found herself in a different setting: A young Kristen Blake in a daytime soap, “Days of Our Lives.” She did not apply for the role; producers called after seeing her in “ER,” can you imagine getting roles without an audition?
You might think her CV cannot be more diverse, but it is! She also appeared in a few episodes of Disney’s “Lizzie McGuire” as a “Cute Burper” and a dancer. It’s not the material of a scriptwriter.
Milana also believed in education and wasn’t just into acting. She never completed her education at Beverly Hills High School because she wanted to expedite her studies, not because she was a rebel. Later, she joined the University of California, San Diego, majoring in communication.
Through her time at the university, her passion for comedy and acting was kindled and laid the groundwork for her involvement in the famous Upright Citizens Brigade, which has had such alums as Amy Poehler and Aubrey Plaza. This is an extraordinarily funny people league, and Milana is a perfect fit.
Milana also tried her hand at the field of YouTube comedy. With another CollegeHumor colleague, Stevie Nelson, Milana co-founded a channel known as “Live Prude Girls,” which has been silent for years but has attracted millions of views.
Milana’s character, Lily, is just another commercial character. However, she is deep! The brains behind the ads say that Lily is created to be strong, smart, and human, and she already shot more than forty ads, and it seems like she is already in the picture for the long term.
The famous Amy Schumer even spoofed Milana’s iconic character, which initially flattered Vayntrub. However, Milana later criticized Schumer for portraying her character in a ‘dumb and sexy’ way, claiming that Lily was a ‘subtle feminist.’
Therefore, the next time you see Lily vigorously selling AT&T deals, you will know that the woman behind those frames is one of many layers and as mysterious as a person can get.