In her next film, Malin Akerman tackles a role that gave her a little practice for real life: the newlywed bride. Luckily, her off-screen story is a bit different from that of The Heartbreak Kid, out Oct. 5, in which she plays the seemingly perfect wife of Ben Stiller.

“She’s the girl you meet and you love and you bank on her,” explains 29-year-old Akerman of her character, Lila. “Then, the second [she gets] married, the switches start to turn and she becomes this crazy, crazy woman.”

Akerman had her own fairy-tale wedding on the Amalfi Coast this June to her longtime love, musician Roberto Zincone, but luckily has not yet experienced any signs of insanity. In any case, the refreshingly breezy blonde relished getting to play the outrageous “kook” on camera. Not to mention that filming with Stiller and the rest of the Farrelly brothers’ humorous crew hardly felt like work. “It was basically like being at camp,” she laughs.

The Swedish-born former mannequin lived in Stockholm until she was two, when her family decamped for Toronto. She heads back to her homeland every year, schedule permitting, to visit family in Falsterbo, a small beach town on the southern tip of Sweden. Her international upbringing means Akerman speaks four languages: English, Swedish, Italian (her husband’s native tongue) and French. “My mom sent me to French immersion school—kicking and screaming all the way,” she remembers.

Her innocent, wide-eyed features belie the fact Akerman is also the lead singer of a rock band, The Petalstones. (Her husband is a drummer in the band). “I’m not a trained singer,” she says. “That’s why rock is good: If you can’t hit a note, you just scream it. A ballad? I don’t know if I can do that.”

Despite her model-like build, Akerman is not one to wear only high fashion, nor is she above hitting Urban Outfitters. “I like a lot of vintage too,” she says. “I wear lots of little, flitty dresses,” which she pairs incongruously with moccasins or boots.

UP NEXT: Akerman plays Katherine Heigl’s younger sister in the upcoming 27 Dresses. “She’s the kind of sister you hate, because everything comes so easily to her,” says Akerman of her character. And this September she starts shooting Watchmen, a graphic novel adaptation directed by Zack Snyder of 300 fame. “I’m actually driving to the personal trainer they got me right now,” says Akerman. “It’s very painful, I might add.”

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