The Moodie Davitt Report recently launched a new column, ‘Better moments make the world smile’ in association with Mars Wrigley International Travel Retail. In this feature we cast the spotlight on memorable human moments from around the world of travel, aviation and travel retail.

Love Actually

The Original

Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion makes out that we live in a world of hatred and greed but I don’t see that. Seems to me that love is everywhere. Often it’s not particularly dignified, or newsworthy – but it’s always there – fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. Before the planes hit the Twin Towers, as far as I know, none of the phone calls from the people onboard were messages of hate and revenge – they were all messages of love. lf you look for it, I’ve got a sneaking suspicion you’ll find that love, actually, is all around.

Love Actually

The Heathrow Remake

Anytime I find myself worrying about what the future holds in these uncertain times, I think about the arrivals hall at Heathrow. We’ve been living in a difficult and isolated world for a while now. But as the world cautiously opens up, I see love and connection everywhere. It may not be perfectly framed nor headline news, but it’s all around. Where possible, we are coming back together to give the warm hugs that we’ve all been missing – parents, children, old friends and new additions to build memories and share adventures once again. When the world went into lockdown, all I heard was stories of people desperate to stay connected in any way they knew how; people surviving through the worst by supporting one another. If you look for it, whatever life throws at us, you’ll find that love really is all around.

Here’s a great initiative undertaken at the UK’s number one airport at the start of December, tailor-made for our column. The famously poignant opening scene of the smash hit 2003 Richard Curtis film Love Actually, set at Heathrow Airport, has been recreated by the airport company especially for Christmas (video below). Hugh Grant’s monologue from the film has been reimagined for today’s times by the movie’s script supervisor Lisa Vick, with the new one-minute film narrated by Martine McCutcheon, who played Natalie in the movie.

The new words reflect the ongoing challenges caused by the pandemic and the emotion of reuniting with friends and family as the world slowly opens back up. The scene has been reshot at Heathrow Terminal 3, the same location it was filmed in almost two decades ago. It features footage of real-life passengers emerging in Arrivals and reuniting with loved ones in time for Christmas, after months and even years of being apart.

The festive film launches as Heathrow expects to face a busy Christmas despite demand being suppressed by the ongoing impact of COVID-19, particularly the Omicron variant. Research commissioned by the airport company earlier this year found that two in three people (62%) haven’t seen a loved one in over a year, with 40% of the UK having loved ones who live abroad. We look forward to bringing you more heart-warming moments in forthcoming issues as travel recovery worldwide (hopefully) gains momentum.

*If you work in the travel retail industry and wish to nominate a moment or event for our new ‘Better moments make the world smile’ column please email Dermot Davitt at

The Moodie Davitt eZine Issue 304 | 21 December 2021

The Moodie Davitt eZine is published 15 times per year by The Moodie Davitt Report (Moodie International Ltd). © All material is copyright and cannot be reproduced without the permission of the Publisher. To find out more visit and to subscribe, please e-mail

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