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David Attenborough's Life Stories

S2-E20 Elsa

S2-E20 Elsa

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This excellent series draws to a poignant close with Attenborough’s recollections of Elsa, the lioness that was raised from a cub by Joy and George Adamson. There’s a spine-tingling moment when he notes that Elsa “may have been born free, but her life was shot through with violence from beginning to end.”


The eminent naturalist and broadcaster recalls how the BBC asked him to visit the Adamsons in Kenya, who were famous for hand-rearing a lioness called Elsa. David discusses the romanticism of their book, Born Free, starring the predator, and the hazardous implications of befriending a big cat.

Cast & Crew

Producer Polly Procter
Writer David Attenborough


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