‘The Sex Lives of College Girls’ Star Ilia Isorelýs Paulino on Living Lila’s Truth

Ilia Isorelýs Paulino and Pauline Chalamet in 'The Sex Lives of College Girls' Season 2
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HBO Max

[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for The Sex Lives of College Girls Season 2, Episodes 1-6.]

The Sex Lives of College Girls may center around the drama ties to suitemates Kimberly, Bela, Leighton, and Whitney — played by Pauline Chalamet, Amrit Kaur, Reneé Rapp, and Alyah Chanelle Scott, but Essex wouldn’t be the same without Ilia Isorelýs Paulino‘s Lila.

The uber-confident, unapologetically explicit student has just received a promotion at the university’s coffee shop, Sips. The gig is sure to further solidify her role of offering uninvited but oftentimes necessary wisdom. “She’s like CEO level,” Paulino jokes, adding, “I think you just see her really come into her leadership skills.”

With only four episodes remaining for the season, Paulino promises that Lila isn’t going to lose her more carefree side despite the new responsibilities. The actress says she’s “still keeping the fun we all fell in love with. And so you can expect to see like her at some more parties, definitely hitting on all the men and definitely objectifying them, but in a way that’s funny and endearing.”

Ilia Isorelýs Paulino in 'The Sex Lives of College Girls' Season 2

(Credit: HBO Max)

And as viewers have seen so far in Season 2, there’s been more Lila all around as she gets involved with Bela’s comedy magazine and makes a splash at parties. “I love my scenes with all the girls ’cause then off-camera we’re just acting a mess,” Paulino muses. “It never really feels like work ’cause we’re just having fun,” she adds. “It’s just a pleasure and a blessing.”

“Anytime I have a scene with Pauline [Chalamet], I love it,” Paulino notes. Lila got some fun interview support from Kimberly as she vied for the management position at Sips. As Pulino says, “I think we bounce off each other really well, in a way that’s real and grounded and always fun.”

More often than not, Lila offers encouragement and support to Kimberly and their fellow coworker Canaan (Christopher Meyer), but there was a little dynamic shift as Lila began to crack under pressure a bit. “You could just see Lila sweating, so, you know, it’ll be funny,” Paulino acknowledges. “Her confidence was shaken a little bit, but it is so strong that she was like, ‘we’re gonna practice and get right back up, and then I’m gonna go get this job.'”

Ilia Isorelýs Paulino in 'The Sex Lives of College Girls'

(Credit: HBO Max)

When it comes to an off-the-cuff kind of character, how much of what Lila says is actually on the page? While Paulino maintains that most of what makes it onscreen is written, she adds, “the beauty of playing a character like Lila is that you really can give her some freedom. And I think the writers — God bless them — trust me for some reason.”

That natural ease of her character extends to viewers who have reached out to Paulino. The actress says, “I’ve had a lot of outreach, and I’m so thankful for that.” When it comes to Lila, the actress says, “she’s just like living her truth, and that’s the way that we all wanna live.”

“So to see someone on screen like that, especially when I’m very cognizant of the way I look, it’s very refreshing and empowering, and because, let’s be honest, more b**ches look like me than they look like [a supermodel]. You know what I mean? And I think that’s just relatable.”

See more of Lila’s relatable moments as The Sex Lives of College Girls continues on HBO Max, and relive all her hilarious scenes anytime on the streamer.

The Sex Lives of College Girls, Season 2, New Episodes, Thursdays, HBO Max