The idea of a movie based on the board game Battleship might seem odd enough even without director Peter Berg deciding to throw aliens into the mix. But adding R&B siren (and acting novice) Rihanna to the cast? What kind of ship is this, anyway?

According to Rihanna, it's the kind that demands grueling, military-style training if you want to stay on board.

"It was a role I felt like I could handle for my first time acting and [Berg] was super enthusiastic about it," Rihanna told Fandango during a recent interview. But saying 'yes' was the easy part -- then came boot camp.

"One man drilled me, yelled at me, cursed me out, made me do pushups,” she lamented. “My best friend was there and I told her, ‘I’m about to do acting class, you’re gonna want to kill this man but please, just stay in the other room.’ She would come in and just look around and be like, ‘Did he just say F.U. to her?’"

He sure did -- and despite Rihanna's tough bad-girl image, she knew better than to give as good as she got. "He probably would have thrown me through the window!" she joked. "I was so scared, I just looked at him like, ‘I swear I’ll get it right, I’ll be good!’"

And how did she deal with swapping out her usual glamorous wardrobe for no-nonsense military garb? "This is how I grew up," she said of the dressed-down look she sports for the film. "Most of my friends were guys. In this case I’m one of the guys. I’m not acknowledged as the female, no sympathy for me."

'Battleship' is scheduled for a May 18, 2012 release.

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