North Korea has offered 200,000 soldiers as extras to a Hong Kong film director who is shooting the first foreign movie in the isolated country, a newspaper reported Sunday.

The Hong Kong film team believes North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, a film enthusiast and James Bond fan who reportedly owns a collection of 20,000 foreign films, is taking an interest in the project, the Sunday Morning Post reported.Director Jacob Cheung said the film is about a small state defended by a pacifist against invasion just before China's Warring States period between 403 B.C. and 221 B.C., the paper said.

The epic is set near Beijing, but the film team cited lower costs in its choice to shoot in North Korea.

With the 200,000 North Korean soldiers as extras, the movie would have one of the biggest casts in film history, the report said.

Shooting of the film will begin in late August, the paper said.