All the President's Men: The 15 Cabinet-Level Departments

The Cabinet was established in Article II, Section 2 of the United States Constitution to provide a source of key advisors to the President. Today, the Cabinet includes the Vice President and 15 executive departments. Here's a primer on the departments, in order of their succession to the Presidency.

Department of State

Established: The Department of State was originally established by the First Congress of the United States as the Department of Foreign Affairs on July 27, 1789. The name was changed to the Department of State less than 2 months later, when Congress passed an Act to "provide for the safe keeping of the Acts, Records, and Seal of the United States, and for other purposes."

First Secretary: After spending the previous 5 years as Minister to France, Thomas Jefferson served under George Washington from 1790 until 1793. Jefferson resigned over a disagreement about whether the U.S. should support the French in the French Revolution. He wanted to back the French; Alexander Hamilton supported the British; and Washington, whose military career began with the French and Indian War, opted for neutrality.

Mission: Develop foreign policy, advance freedom, and create a secure and beneficial world for the American people and the international community.

Notable: Six men "“ Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, John Quincy Adams, Martin Van Buren, and James Buchanan "“ served as Secretary of State before becoming President.

Department of the Treasury

treasuryEstablished: Like the State Department, the Department of the Treasury was formally established by the First Congress of the United States in 1789.

First Secretary: Alexander Hamilton served under Washington from 1789-1795. During that time, he instituted a plan for paying back the country's massive war debt, which helped establish the United States' credibility abroad. Hamilton also helped establish the First Bank of the United States in 1791. Ironically, he resigned his position to join the New York bar because he wasn't making enough money.

Mission: Collect revenue (the IRS is the largest of Treasury's bureaus), produce money, and formulate economic policy.

Notable: The Treasury is responsible for producing all of the currency and coinage in the United States. The Treasury building is depicted on one side of the $10 bill; Hamilton is on the other.

Department of Defense

dodEstablished: The Department of Defense was founded with the signing of the National Security Act of 1947 by Harry S. Truman. The Act merged the Department of War, which had been established in 1789 as one of the original four Cabinet-level positions, and the Department of the Navy, and also created the United States Air Force. The new department was originally named the National Military Establishment, but the unfortunate pronunciation of its acronym prompted it to be renamed 2 years later.

First Secretary: Henry Knox was the first Secretary of War, while James Forrestal, an aviator in World War I, was named the first Secretary of Defense in 1947. Suffering from major depression, Forrestal committed suicide two months after resigning his position in 1949.

Mission: Provide the military forces needed to deter war and protect the security of the United States.

Notable: Donald Rumsfeld is both the youngest and oldest person to serve as Secretary of Defense. He was 43 when Gerald Ford named him Secretary of Defense in 1975, and after being re-appointed by George W. Bush in 2001, served until he was 74.

Department of Justice

DOJEstablished: In 1870, Ulysses S. Grant signed a bill to create a Department of Justice headed by the Attorney General -- a position that dates back to the First Congress.

First Attorney General: George Washington appointed Edmund Jennings Randolph, who had previously served as Governor of Virginia, the first Attorney General of the United States on September 26, 1789.

Mission: Enforce the law and defend the interests of the United States according to the law, prevent and control crime, and seek just punishment for criminals.

Notable: The origin of the FBI can be traced to a force of Special Agents established by Attorney General Charles Bonaparte in 1908.

Department of the Interior

interiorEstablished: As its seal indicates, the Department of the Interior was established on March 3, 1849, the last day of the 30th Congress, to handle domestic matters.

First Secretary: Zachary Taylor named Thomas Ewing, who had previously served as Secretary of the Treasury under William Henry Harrison and John Tyler, the first Secretary of the Interior.

Mission: Protect and provide access to our nation's natural and cultural heritage and honor our trust responsibilities to Indian Tribes and our commitments to island communities.

Notable: The U.S. Geological Survey and National Parks Service, bureaus of the DOI, were created in 1879 and 1916, respectively. The department's oldest bureau, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, manages over 66 million acres of land and was created in 1824 under the Department of War.

Department of Agriculture

agEstablished: The Department of Agriculture was established in 1862 by Abraham Lincoln.

First Secretary: The department wasn't elevated to Cabinet status until the final year of Grover Cleveland's first term in 1889. Norman Jay Coleman, who went into farming after receiving his law degree, served as the first Secretary of Agriculture for all of 3 weeks under Cleveland before President-elect Benjamin Harrison appointed his own secretary.

Mission: Formulate policy on farming, food, and natural resources, maintain food safety, and combat hunger worldwide.

Notable: Public outrage at the unsanitary conditions at Chicago meatpacking plants described in Upton Sinclair's The Jungle prompted the 1906 Meat Inspection Act.

Department of Commerce

commerceEstablished: The Department of Commerce and Labor was created in 1903, but the Department of Commerce wasn't established as it is known today until President William H. Taft split the department on his final day in office in 1913.

First Secretary: Woodrow Wilson appointed William C. Redfield, a Congressman from New York, the first Secretary of Commerce. The first Secretary of Commerce and Labor was George B. Cortelyou.

Mission: Foster, serve, and promote the nation's economic development and technological advancement.

Notable: Future President Herbert Hoover was the longest-serving Secretary of Commerce. During his 7+ years in the position, Hoover expanded the government's "Own Your Own Home" campaign, which promoted home ownership among the nation's growing workforce.

Department of Labor

laborEstablished: The Department of Labor was a bureau within the Department of Commerce and Labor until the aforementioned split of that department in 1913.

First Secretary: William B. Wilson was appointed by Woodrow Wilson (no relation) as the first Secretary of Labor and helped the United States mobilize an effective workforce to support the troops abroad during World War I.

Mission: Assure work safety, fair pay, and unemployment insurance benefits.

Notable: Frances Perkins, who served as Secretary of Labor from 1933-1945, was the first female Cabinet-level secretary in U.S. history. The Labor Department's building is named after her.

Department of Health and Human Services

hhsEstablished: The Department of Health and Human Services was created in 1980 following the separation of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, a Cabinet-level department established by Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953.

First Secretary: Oveta Culp Hobby, a first commanding officer of the Women's Army Corps, was the first Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare.

Mission: Protect the health of all Americans and provide essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves.

Notable: Patricia R. Harris, who was secretary when the department's name changed in 1980 under Jimmy Carter, was the first African-American woman to serve in a Cabinet position.

Department of Housing and Urban Development

hudEstablished: The Department of Housing and Urban Development Act of 1965, which was signed by Lyndon B. Johnson, created HUD as a Cabinet-level agency.

First Secretary: Robert C. Weaver, a Harvard graduate, became the first African-American to serve in the U.S. Cabinet when Johnson appointed him as the first Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

Mission: Increase home ownership, support community development, and increase access to affordable housing.

Notable: President John F. Kennedy tried to establish a similar department in 1962 through legislation and his reorganization powers, but was blocked in both instances by Congress.

Department of Transportation

DOTEstablished: The Department of Transportation was established on October 15, 1966, by President Johnson and consolidated 31 agencies and bureaus.

First Secretary: Under the direction of Alan Stephenson Boyd, who served in the position from 1967-1969, the DOT issued the first national safety and federal motor vehicle standards.

Mission: Ensure a fast, safe, efficient, accessible, and convenient transportation system.

Notable: Among the many responsibilities transferred to the DOT when it was established was oversight of daylight saving time.

Department of Energy

energyEstablished: President Carter established the Department of Energy in 1977 to centralize the government's energy policy in the wake of an oil crisis. The DOE was the first addition to the Cabinet in 11 years.

First Secretary: James Schlesinger, who served as Secretary of Defense under Richard Nixon and was dismissed by Gerald Ford for insubordination, was named the first Secretary of Energy.

Mission: Advance the national, economic, and energy security of the United States and promote scientific and technological innovation.

Notable: One of the DOE's first initiatives was the development of solar research. Carter remarked in 1978: "Nobody can embargo sunlight. No cartel controls the sun. Its energy will not run out. It will not pollute our air or poison our waters. It is free from stench and smog." Today, the DOE sponsors more basic research in the physical sciences than any other federal agency in the U.S.

Department of Education

educationEstablished: Carter delivered on a 1976 campaign promise to the National Education Association when he signed a bill establishing the Department of Education as the 13th Cabinet-level department in 1979. The Office of Education was previously within the Department of Health, Education and Welfare.

First Secretary: Shirley Hufstedler, who attended Stanford Law School and was one of President Ford's candidates to replace Justice William O. Douglas on the Supreme Court, was named the first Secretary of Education after she served as Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Mission: Foster excellence and equal access by establishing policies on federal financial aid for education, distribute and monitor financial aid, and collect data on the nation's schools.

Notable: President Ronald Reagan vowed to eliminate the Department of Education as a Cabinet-level department and appointed T.H. Bell as Secretary of Education with that goal in mind, but both men struggled to fight for its abolishment without appearing anti-education.

Department of Veterans Affairs

vetsEstablished:In 1988, Reagan signed legislation that would establish the Department of Veterans Affairs as a Cabinet-level department the following year. The Veterans Administration had been operating since 1930 and the elevation to Cabinet-level status did little to change its role.

First Secretary: President-elect George H.W. Bush named Edward J. Derwinski, a World War II veteran, as the first Secretary of Veterans Affairs.

Mission: Care for the nation's veterans, issue checks for disability, education and pensions, and supervise national cemeteries.

Notable: The Department of Veterans Affairs is the nation's second-largest federal agency. In fiscal year 2008, the department provided $38.9 billion in disability compensation, death compensation, and pension to 3.7 million people.

Department of Homeland Security

dhsEstablished: The Office of Homeland Security was established to foster intelligence information sharing in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. DHS became a Cabinet-level department under George W. Bush with the passing of the Homeland Security Act in 2002 and merged 22 agencies, including the Customs Service, United States Border Patrol, Coast Guard, and Secret Service.

First Secretary: Tom Ridge, Governor of Pennsylvania, was the first Director of Homeland Security.

Mission: Secure the country and preserve America's freedoms while preparing to respond to all hazards and disasters.

Notable: FEMA, which had operated as an independent agency since 1979, was one of the agencies absorbed by DHS.

Amazon's Best Black Friday Deals: Tech, Video Games, Kitchen Appliances, Clothing, and More

Amazon
Amazon

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Black Friday is finally here, and Amazon is offering great deals on kitchen appliances, tech, video games, and plenty more. We will keep updating this page as sales come in, but for now, here are the best Amazon Black Friday sales to check out.

Kitchen

Instant Pot/Amazon

- Instant Pot Duo Plus 9-in-115 Quart Electric Pressure Cooker; $90 (save $40)

- Keurig K-Cafe Special Edition; $190 (save $30)

- Ninja OS301 Foodi 10-in-1 Pressure Cooker and Air Fryer; $125 (save $75)

- Nespresso Vertuo Next Coffee and Espresso Machine by Breville; $120 (save $60)

- KitchenAid KSMSFTA Sifter with Scale Attachment; $95 (save $75)

- Keurig K-Mini Coffee Maker; $60 (save $20)

- Cuisinart Bread Maker; $80 (save $97)

- Anova Culinary Sous Vide Precision Cooker; $139 (save $60)

- Aicook Juicer Machine; $35 (save $15)

- JoyJolt Double Wall Insulated Espresso Mugs - Set of Two; $14 (save $10)

- Longzon Silicone Stretch Lids - Set of 14; $16 (save $11)

- HadinEEon Milk Frother; $37 (save $33)

Home Appliances

Roomba/Amazon

- iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum with Wi-Fi Connectivity; $179 (save $101)

- ASAKUKI 500ml Premium Essential Oil Diffuser; $22 (save $4)

- Facebook Portal Smart Video Calling 10 inch Touch Screen Display with Alexa; $129 (save $50)

- Bissell air320 Smart Air Purifier with HEPA and Carbon Filters; $280 (save $50)

- Oscillating Quiet Cooling Fan Tower; $59 (save $31)

- TaoTronics PTC 1500W Fast Quiet Heating Ceramic Tower; $55 (save $10)

- Vitamix 068051 FoodCycler 2 Liter Capacity; $300 (save $100)

- Ring Video Doorbell; $70 (save $30)

Video games

Sony

- Marvel's Spider-Man: Game of The Year Edition for PlayStation 4; $20 (save $20)

- The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening; $40 (save $20)

- Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity; $50 (save $10)

- Marvel's Avengers; $25 (save $33)

- The Last of Us Part II for PlayStation 4; $30 (save $30)

- LEGO Harry Potter: Collection; $15 (save $15)

- Ghost of Tsushima; $40 (save $20)

- BioShock: The Collection; $20 (save $30)

- The Sims 4; $24 (save $20)

- God of Warfor PlayStation 4; $10 (save $10)

- Days Gonefor PlayStation 4; $20 (save $6)

- Luigi's Mansion 3 for Nintendo Switch; $40 (save $20)

Computers and tablets

Microsoft/Amazon

- New Apple MacBook Pro 16 inches with 512 GB; $2149 (save $250)

- Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 with 13.5 inch Touch-Screen; $1200 (save $400)

- Lenovo ThinkPad T490 Laptop; $889 (save $111)

- Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet (64GB); $120 (save $70)

- Amazon Fire HD 10 Kids Edition Tablet (32 GB); $130 (save $70)

- Apple iPad Mini (64 GB); $335 (save $64)

- Vankyo MatrixPad S2 Tablet; $120 (save $10)

Tech, gadgets, and TVs

Apple/Amazon

- Apple Watch Series 3 with GPS; $120 (save $79)

- Seneo Wireless Charger, 3 in 1 Wireless Charging Station; $16 (save $10)

- SAMSUNG 75-inch Class Crystal 4K Smart TV; $998 (save $200)

- Nixplay 2K Smart Digital Picture Frame 9.7 Inch Silver; $238 (save $92)

- All-New Amazon Echo Dot with Clock and Alexa (4th Gen); $39 (save $21)

- MACTREM LED Ring Light 6" with Tripod Stand; $16 (save $3)

- Amazon Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote; $28 (save $12)

- DR. J Professional HI-04 Mini Projector; $93 (save $37)

Headphones and speakers

Beats/Amazon

- Beats Solo3 Wireless On-Ear Headphones; $120 (Save $80)

- Apple AirPods Pro; $169 (save $50)

- Anker Soundcore Upgraded Bluetooth Speaker; $22 (save $8)

- Powerbeats Pro Wireless Earphones; $175 (save $75)

- JBL Boombox; $280 (save $120)

Movies and TV

HBO/Amazon

- Game of Thrones: The Complete Series; $115 (save $89)

- Jurassic World 5-Movie Set; $23 (save $37)

- Deadwood: The Complete Series; $42 (save $28)

- Back to the Future Trilogy; $15 (save $21)

Toys and Games

Amazon

- Awkward Family Photos Greatest Hits; $15 (save $10)

- Exploding Kittens Card Game; $10 (save $10)

- Cards Against Humanity: Hidden Gems Bundle; $14 (save $5)

- LOL Surprise OMG Remix Pop B.B. Fashion Doll; $29 (save $6)

- LEGO Ideas Ship in a Bottle 92177 Expert Building Kit; $56 (save $14)

Furniture

Casper/Amazon

- Casper Sleep Element Queen Mattress; $476 (save $119)

- ZINUS Alexis Deluxe Wood Platform Bed Frame; $135 (save $24)

- ROMOON Dresser Organizer with 5 Drawers; $59 (save $11) 

- AmazonBasics Room Darkening Blackout Window Curtains; $26 (save $5)

- Writing Desk by Caffoz; $119 (save $21)

- SPACE Seating Office Support Managers Chair; $112 (save $116)

- Rivet Globe Stick Table Lamp; $53 (save $17)

- Christopher Knight Home Merel Mid-Century Modern Club Chair; $188 (save $10)

- Walker Edison Furniture Industrial Rectangular Coffee Table; $121 (save $48)

Beauty

Haus/Amazon

- MySmile Teeth Whitening Kit with LED Light; $21 (save $12) 

- Cliganic USDA Organic Lip Balms Set of Six; $6 (save $4)

- HAUS LABORATORIES By Lady Gaga: LE RIOT LIP GLOSS; $7 (save $11)

- Native Deodorant for Men and Women Set of Three; $25 (save $11) 

- BAIMEI Rose Quartz Jade Roller & Gua Sha; $14 (save $3)

- Honest Beauty Clearing Night Serum with Pure Retinol and Salicylic Acid; $20 (save $8)

- WOW Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo and Hair Conditioner Set; $30 (save $5) 

- La Roche-Posay Effaclar Purifying Foaming Gel Cleanser; $15 (save $5)

- wet n wild Bretman Rock Shadow Palette; $9 (save $6)

- EltaMD UV Daily Tinted Face Sunscreen Moisturizer with Hyaluronic Acid; $25 (save $6)

Clothes

Ganni/Amazon

- Ganni Women's Crispy Jacquard Dress; $200 (save $86) 

- The Drop Women's Maya Silky Slip Skirt; $36 (save $9)

- Steve Madden Women's Editor Boot; $80 (save $30)

- adidas Women's Roguera Cross Trainer; $40 (save $25)

- Line & Dot Women's Elizabeth Sweater; $74 (save $18)

- Levi's Men's Sherpa Trucker Jacket; $57 (save $41)

- Adidas Men's Essentials 3-Stripes Tapered Training Joggers Sweatpants; $28 (save $12)

- Timex Men's Weekender XL 43mm Watch; $32 (save $20)

- Ray-Ban Unisex-Adult Hexagonal Flat Lenses Sunglasses; $108 (save $46) 

- Reebok Men's Flashfilm Train Cross Trainer; $64 (save $16)

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10 Amazing Facts About Bruce Lee On His 80th Birthday

Photo courtesy of The Bruce Lee Family Archive
Photo courtesy of The Bruce Lee Family Archive

Bruce Lee is one of pop culture's most multifaceted icons. Legions of fans admire him for his movies, his martial arts prowess, his incomprehensible physical fitness, his championing of Chinese culture, and even his philosophies on life. Yet for all the new ground Lee broke, most of his recognition only came after his death at the age of 32. Read on to learn more about the life of this profound, if enigmatic, superstar.

1. Bruce Lee’s first starring role in a movie came when he was just 10 years old.

In 1950’s The Kid, a pre-teen Bruce Lee played the role of Kid Cheung, a streetwise orphan and wry troublemaker, based on a comic strip from the time. Starring opposite Lee, playing a kindly factory owner, was his father, Lee Hoi-chuen, who also happened to be a famous opera singer. (Bruce Lee was actually born in San Francisco while his father was there on tour; Lee would move back to the U.S. in 1959).

According to Lee biographer Matthew Polly, the movie was a big enough success in China to earn sequel consideration. There was just one problem: A young Bruce Lee was getting into fights at school and out on the streets, so his father forbid him from acting again until he straightened up—which, of course, didn’t wind up happening.

2. Bruce Lee was deemed physically unfit for the U.S. Army.

While he may have walked around with body fat in the single digits and could do push-ups using only two fingers, Lee still managed to fail a military physical for the U.S. draft board back in 1963. Despite being an adherent to physical fitness all his adult life, it was an undescended testicle that kept him from fighting for Uncle Sam in Vietnam.

3. Bruce Lee was an exquisite cha-cha dancer.

Long before he was known for breakneck fight choreography, Bruce Lee’s physical skills were focused on the dance floor. More specifically, the cha-cha. In Polly’s book, Bruce Lee: A Life, the author explains that the dance trend made its way from Cuba through the Philippines and soon landed in China. And once the cha-cha settled into the Hong Kong social scene, it didn’t take long for youth dance competitions to spring up. Lee had been taking part in cha-cha dancing since the age of 14, and in 1958, he won the Crown Colony Cha-Cha Championship. Foreshadowing his later dedication to martial arts, Lee would keep crib notes of all 108 different cha-cha steps in his wallet so that he could obsessively memorize them.

4. Bruce Lee refused to lose a fight to Robin.

The Green Hornet aired its first episode in September 1966, with Bruce Lee as the Hornet's (Van Williams) lightning-quick sidekick, Kato. The series would immediately be compared to Batman, ABC's other costumed crime-fighting show, and it wouldn't be long before a two-part crossover episode was in the works. And as heroes do, before they teamed up, they first had to fight each other. According to Newsweek, since Batman was by far the more popular show, the script featured a fight between Burt Ward's Robin and Bruce Lee's Kato that was set to end with the Boy Wonder getting the upper hand. But who would really buy that?

Well, Lee certainly didn't—and he knew no one else would, either. Williams later recalled that Lee read the script and simply said, "I'm not going to do that," and walked off. Common sense soon prevailed ... sort of. The script was rewritten to change the ending—not to a Kato K.O., but to a more diplomatic draw. Though The Green Hornet was Lee's first big break in the United States, the series itself lasted only 26 episodes.

5. Bruce Lee trained numerous Hollywood stars.

As Bruce Lee worked to become a big-screen heavyweight, he made a living as a martial arts trainer to the stars. Among Lee’s students were Steve McQueen, James Coburn, James Garner, Roman Polanski, and Sharon Tate. For his services, Lee was known to charge about $275 per hour or $1000 for 10 courses. McQueen and Coburn grew so enamored with Lee over the years that they remained close friends until his death in 1973, with both men serving as pallbearers at Lee's funeral (alongside Chuck Norris).

6. Roman Polanski may have (briefly) thought Bruce Lee murdered Sharon Tate.

In addition to providing Roman Polanski and his wife Sharon Tate with kung fu lessons, Bruce Lee also lived near the couple in Los Angeles when Tate and four others, including Lee’s close friend Jay Sebring, were murdered by the Manson Family in August 1969. It would be months before the Manson Family was arrested for the murders, but in the meantime, according to an article from Esquire, Polanski had grown obsessed with finding a suspect, looking for potential perpetrators even amongst his own inner circle.

During one kung fu lesson in the months after the murders, Lee had mentioned to Polanski how he had recently lost his glasses, which immediately piqued the director’s interest. A mysterious pair of horn-rimmed glasses had been found at the murder scene near his wife’s body, after all. Polanski had even purchased a gauge to measure the lenses and find out the exact prescription so that he could do his own detective work, according to The New York Post.

The director, without giving himself away, offered to bring Lee to his optician to get a new pair—this would allow him to hear Lee’s prescription firsthand and determine if the specs discovered at the crime scene belonged to him. It turned out Lee’s prescription didn’t match, and Polanski never told his friend about his suspicions.

7. Bruce Lee had his sweat glands removed.

Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon (1973).Warner Home Video

Bruce Lee brought an impeccable physique to the screen that was decades ahead of its time. But because his roles required so much physicality, he would be drenched with sweat while filming. And apparently, the martial arts pioneer loathed the sweat stains that would show up on his clothing as a result. His solution? In 1973, Lee actually underwent a procedure to surgically remove the sweat glands from his armpits to avoid the fashion faux pas from showing up on camera.

8. Bruce Lee’s cause of death still raises questions.

Bruce Lee’s death at the age of 32 on July 20, 1973, was officially ruled the result of a cerebral edema, or swelling of the brain. Lee had complained about headaches on the day of his death, and was given a painkiller by Betty Ting Pei—an actress who claimed to be Lee's mistress—before lying down for a nap. He never woke up.

Though many reports at the time suggested Lee had an allergic reaction to an ingredient in the painkiller, Polly points to a mystery that began on May 10, 1973, when the star previously collapsed in a hot recording studio while dubbing new dialogue for Enter the Dragon.

In Polly’s opinion, Lee’s collapse had to do with heatstroke, since his stint in an overheated recording studio was compounded by a lack of sweat glands that prevented his body from cooling off naturally. Heatstroke can also cause swelling in the brain, much like was found during Lee’s autopsy. And Dr. Lisa Leon, an expert in hyperthermia at the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, told Polly, “A person who has suffered one heat stroke is at increased risk for another" and that there may be long-term complications after the initial incident.

9. Footage from Bruce Lee’s Funeral was used in 1978’s Game of Death.

At the time of his death, Bruce Lee was involved in numerous projects, including the movie that would become Game of Death, his next directorial effort. According to Vice, there wasn’t much completed on the film by the time of Lee’s passing—there were some notes, a story outline (which simply read “The big fight. An arrest is made. The airport. The end.”), and 40 minutes of footage, including Lee’s now-iconic fight against NBA great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Usually, a project in that situation would just be a lost cause, but production company Golden Harvest wanted to salvage what they could, so they hired Enter the Dragon director Robert Clouse to put together ... something. The result was a Frankenstein’s monster of a film, comprised of 11 minutes of existing footage Lee shot, overdubbed clips from his previous movies, and stand-ins to fill out certain scenes. The director even resorted to using an unfortunate Bruce Lee cardboard cutout to complete one shot.

That’s not even the top rung on the ladder of poor taste: When the movie called for Lee’s character to fake his death, they used footage from his actual funeral to realize the scene, complete with waves of mourners, pallbearers, and closeups of Lee’s open casket.

10. Bruce Lee’s posthumous success resulted in its own sub-genre.

Lee’s career was exploding in China and gaining momentum in the United States by 1973, but he passed away just a month before his biggest hit was released: Enter the Dragon. The movie, which grossed more than $200 million at the worldwide box office, catapulted the late Lee to icon status. But with the star himself no longer around to capitalize, there would soon be a wave of knockoff films and wannabes looking to take advantage of the martial arts craze.

Both affectionately and derisively known as “Bruceploitation” films, this strange sub-genre of martial arts cinema gave life to z-movie oddities like Re-Enter the Dragon and Enter the Game of Death, starring the likes of—and we’re not kidding—Bruce Le and Bruce Li. Jackie Chan was even roped into a few of these movies, like 1976's New Fist of Fury. In 1980, Bruceploitation even went meta with The Clones of Bruce Lee, starring Dragon Lee, Bruce Le, and Bruce Lai, who play genetic reconstructions of the late actor after scientists harvest his DNA.