Lilly From Princess Diaries Is Beyond Gorgeous In Real Life

Who's your favorite character from The Princess Diaries movies? Was it Anne Hathaway's awkward teen-turned-fabulous-royal Mia Thermopolis or Julie Andrews' regal Queen Clarisse Renaldi? Maybe it was Mandy Moore's popular-girl Lana Thomas from the first film or Chris Pine's swoon-worthy Nicholas Devereaux from the sequel. Or, perhaps, you've always been a fan of Lilly Moscovitz, who was played by Heather Matarazzo.

Many actually weren't too fond of the main character's best friend – BuzzFeed even went so far as to deem her the "worst." However, the actress who portrayed Lilly was still willing to defend the fictional teen in April 2020, when someone on Instagram took issue with the character, captioning a picture of Mia's BFF: "Remember when Lilly was b**ching out Mia for her hair and all u wanted to do was punch her in the face."

Matarazzo responded by writing (via Us Weekly), "Listen, she knew she needed an attitude adjustment and she was willing to call herself out as a teen, which is more than most adults I know." However, the actress was willing to concede that, "yes, some of her thoughts and words were just ... [facepalm, eye roll, and eyes emojis]."

While Matarazzo may still be willing to stick up for the young girl she played so many years ago, the actress has come a long way since the time she wore a row of rainbow mini-elastics in her hair onscreen. In fact, these days she's absolutely lovely.

Heather Matarazzo has gorgeous hair, stunning eyes, and dimples that are to die for

Heather Matarazzo may not fit the mold of what is typically considered beautiful and glamourous in Hollywood. She told After Ellen in 2006 that she doesn't consider herself to be "that pretty girl next door." However, after revealing in a 2015 blog post that she was let go from a film when she was younger because she was told that she wasn't "f***able." 

"I can still feel the pain, shame, and humiliation that came over me in that moment," she wrote. "This is a part that I had been so excited to play. She was bold, witty, sarcastic, sexy, but more importantly, she had a deeper vulnerability underneath. She had layers, she was complex."

Matarazzo has since realized that she has plenty of admirable (and enviable) qualities. "I had to look at my gorgeous face, with my piercing blue eyes, my pouty lips, small chin, slightly crooked nose, full teeth and smile. I had to really look at myself and see my beauty," she said. Her conclusion: "I was indeed, not only f***able, but f***ing beautiful." 

She said that personal epiphany marked a turning point in her career. "The roles I started to get called in for were women who were 'beautiful, confident, secure', they were complex, they had bite, they had depth."

Heather Matarazzo talks about playing 'the ugly duckling'

Many movie-lovers may know Heather Matarazzo from The Princess Diaries, but before she played Lilly Moscovitz, the actress appeared in 1995's Welcome to the Dollhouse. However, due to the fact that she played the part of an awkward young girl in the film, she says that she faced issues with her appearance in real life.

"I had difficulties dealing with my own insecurities and identity when I was in my late teens," she told The Guardian in 2017. "It was strange because I never thought about the characters that I played when I was younger. But it wasn't until I became an adolescent that I started hearing words such as 'ugly' or 'plain'. I started to get a firm grasp on how other people saw me, and I took other people's views of me as absolute truths."

In a candid blog post in 2015, Matarazzo said, "I was asked a lot of questions by reporters, such as, 'How does it feel to play the ugly duckling?'" She admits that as a 13-year-old, what she heard was, "[H]ow does it feel to BE ugly?"

While the attention regarding her looks came about because of her work onscreen, she believes her experience was not unique. "Truthfully, I feel that all women go [through] this, especially actors. Will we be seen?"

Fortunately for Matarazzo, she is indeed seen — and loved — by one person, in particular, who adores and respects all aspects of her identity. 

This Princess Diaries actress found her own happily ever after

Heather Matarazzo's character Lilly Moscovitz, watched her best friend find true love in The Princess Diaries 2, but in real life, the actress found her own happily-ever-after. 

In 2018, Matarazzo got engaged to her now-wife, comedian Heather Turman, according to E! News. Yes, they're Heather and Heather, which is pretty darn adorable! However, it appears as if Matarazzo may call her spouse by her last name, if the actress' Instagram post announcing their engagement is any indication: "We kept this to ourselves for a few days, but on 1-11, I asked.....and she said yes. To death and back, I love you, Turman." The smitten star also shared a trio of photos of the pair during what seems to be the big moment when the actress popped the question.

Matarazzo also shared a shot of the duo back in 2017, and captioned it with a lyric from French singer Édith Piaf, writing, "Love goes on a journey, like I do / One day I'll find it / By the time I see its face / I'll recognize it right away." It seems like Matarazzo and Turman see love in each other's faces, which is truly a beautiful thing.