When John Barry won Oscars for "Best Music, Original Music Score" and "Best Music, Original Song" for this film, not only was it his first Oscar victory, it was also the first time an Englishman had won both those particular categories. Barry first heard of his wins from friend Michael Crawford, who'd watched the ceremony on television in New York, and called him in the UK with the news.
After the filming of Born Free, George Adamson started a lion reserve, Kora Reserve, in Kenya. He founded it specifically to help rehabilitate the lions used in the film. A documentary, The Lions Are Free (1967), was made about him and the reserve, and tells what happened to the lions Boy, Girl, Ugas, Mara, Henrietta, and Little Elsa, and other lions that appeared in the first film. George Adamson rehabilitated many of these lions after Born Free was completed.
Despite the theme song subsequently becoming a classic, presenter Carl Foreman didn't like it, and removed it from the original British release of the film. After it reached the US charts in a cover version by pianist Roger Williams, Foreman saw its Oscar chances and reinstated the song. Matt Monro continued to sing it for the rest of his career.