In recent years, audiovisual technology has taken an increasingly prominent position in courtroom procedures. Defense attorneys have traditionally introduced motion pictures of allegedly injured plaintiffs caught in some intense physical activity. More recently, courts have allowed the use of audiovisual depositions, which afford scrutiny of the characteristics and mannerisms of deposed witnesses. In the midst of this evidentiary trend, plaintiffs' counsel now frequently seek admission of "day in the life" films. Such films purport to depict for the jury in graphic detail the effects that a severe personal injury can have on the plaintiff's life. Admission of these films is held to be within the discretion of the trial judge. The recurrent theme of available case law is that "day in the life" films are not inadmissible as a matter of law, but rather admissibility turns upon the circumstances of each case, and the contents and presentation of each film. Successful admission o of the film presents many theoretical and practical challenges to the proponent because a wide spectrum of evidentiary concepts and principles are involved in the admissibility analysis. The question of admissibility in Virginia has yet to be addressed by the state supreme court.
Mahlon G. Funk Jr. & Harry J. Hicks III,
Admissibility of "Day In The Life" Films in Virginia,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
Available at: http://scholarship.richmond.edu/lawreview/vol18/iss4/4