British Lion submitted the 97-minute US version to the British Board of Film Censors on 4 June 1951 and were given an "A" certificate, suitable for children if accompanied by an adult. Following a test run at the Savoy, Dublin from 31 August 1951 (which was reported to have broken the house attendance record), Fabiola's UK public premiere was held at the Grand, Southport from 13 September 1951. After further sneak previews in Jersey and Nottingham the film finally reached the capital on 30 November 1951 with a three-week run at the London Pavilion. British Lion used the original title "Fabiola" throughout the 1950s, but on 3 November 1960 New Realm re-submitted the film to the BBFC under a new title "The Fighting Gladiator and Fabiola," hoping to cash in on the Italian epic craze. However, only ABC's Empire in Longton seems to have announced the full, cumbersome title. Everywhere else shortened it to simply "The Fighting Gladiator." As such it continued to get sporadic showings up to the end of 1966.
Italian version runs 164 minutes; shortened (96 minutes) and re-edited English-dubbed version was released in the USA in 1951.