"One of the strangest, but probably most inevitable, pop culture offshoots to come directly from Close Encounters of the Third Kind was the rumor that, because of the secrecy under which the film was shot, it was being financed by the government as part of the training needed to prepare humans for an actual alien landing. In fact, NASA and the Air Force refused to cooperate with the production, fearing it would spread panic about UFOs just as Spielberg's Jaws had caused an inordinate amount of public anxiety about "killer" sharks. Spielberg said his faith in the possibility of UFOs was boosted when he received a 20-page letter from NASA stating their opposition to the film: "I knew there must be something happening." The rumor about the government's sponsorship of the film persisted and grew when Spielberg released E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial (1982). In fact, a story circulated that when the director screened the film at the White House, President Ronald Reagan confided to him, "You know, there are fewer than six people in this room who know the real story.""