The Washington Area Filmmakers League is hosting the local premiere of a documentary about the annual San Gennaro Festival in New York's Little Italy, "La Dolce Festa," on Wednesday, Sept. 28, at 7:30 p.m. in the Corcoran Auditorium. The director, Kathleen Dowdy, will be present to introduce and discuss both "La Dolce Festa" and a second project, "The Belfast Reel," as well as answer general questions about the funding, production and distribution of independent documentary films.

Detailed information about the program and reservations may be obtained by calling the WAFL office, 547-3456, or Chris Intagliata at 546-1280. This Friday is also the deadline for freelance submissions to the next edition of The WAFL Book, a directory of local film personnel and services. For further information contact intagliata at the number above or Meg Wood at 387-5239.

A course in basic filmmaking including discussions of movie esthetics along with instruction in the manipulation of Super B equipment, will be offered by local filmmaker Michael Day on the 10 Saturday mornings from 9 a.m. to noon beginning Oct. 1. A number of movies will be screened in conjunction with the course, including "Seven Samurai." "La Chienne Andalou" and "The Titicut Follies." The fee is $150, and students are expected to supply their own cameras. For further information, please call 483-3282.

A three-part film-and-lecture series called "The Third Reich in Film: History or Propaganda?" is being sponsored by the National Archives on three consecutive Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. beginning Nov. 2. The documents to be shown include Leni Riefenstahl's "Triumph of the Will" and a rare, priceless fragment made during the siege of the Warsaw ghetto. Robert Wolfe, chief of the Archives' Modern Military Branch, will moderate the discussions. Charles W. Sydnor Jr., associate professor of history at Longwood College and author of a soon-to-be-published book about the SS, will also participate on two evenings. Series tickets are priced at $5 for Archives Associates and $8 for the general public.

The Archives has also announced a film-and-lecture program on Tuesday, Dec. 16, at 7:30 p.m. featuring Prof. Howard Lamar of Yale, the producer of a series of ten 90-minute biographical dramas about the history of the West called "Westering." The project is currently supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Huamanities. Tickets for this program are priced at $2 for associates and $3 for the general public.

The regular "Films at the Archives" series resumes Friday, Oct. 6, with the opening program of "The American Experience," a group of short dramatic films produced by the National Park Service. The subjects range from the explorations of Cabrillo and DeSoto to the settlement of the frontier West. The free showings are held Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. and Fridays at noon and 2:30 p.m.

"Homage to Chagall," a documentary portrait of painter Marc Chagall, will begin a limited engagement at the K-B MacArthur on Wednesday, Sept. 28. Robert Altman's "3 Women," out of circulation since its limited first-run release in five cities last spring, returns to the Washington area on Wednesday, Oct. 5, at a half dozen suburban theaters.

"Fraternity Row," a grim feature about '50s frat life made by a filmmaking class at USC and then acquired by Paramount, is also scheduled for multiple local exposure on Oct. 5. Three openings are currently scheduled for Friday, Oct. 7 - Ken Russell's "Valentino," Carl Reiner's "Oh Good" and Sidney Poitier's "A Piece of the Action," the latest in the cycle of Poitier-Bill Cosby comedies that began with "Uptown Saturday Night." The movie version of Judith Rossner's compelling best-seller. "Looking for Mr. Goodbar," directed by Richard Brooks and co-starring Diane Keaton, Tuesday Weld, Richard Kiley, William Atherton and Richard Gere, opens Wednesday, Oct. 19 at the K-B Cinema and a unit of the Springfield Mall.

The Baltimore Film Forum is sponsoring three movie series during its 1977-78 season. A program of "members' choices," selected from a list that ranges from "Alice Adams" to "120 Days of Solom," is scheduled one Monday night each month at Center Stage. "Modern European Directors: The Professors' Choice," begins 11 Thursday sessions at the Baltimore Museum of Art on Sept. 29 and "French Cinema from 1895 to 1970" fills the same number of Thursdays at the Pratt Free Library starting Jan. 19.

The titles in the "Modern European Directors" series include "Blow-Up," "La Bete Humaine," "Chloe in the Afternoon," "Je t'aime, je t'aime," "Richard III" and "The Earrings of Madame De . . ." The historical surveys begins with Melies' "A Trip to the Moon" and Clair's "Italian Straw Hat" and concludes with Truffault's "The Wild Child." Detailed brochures are available from the Baltimore Film Forum, Inc., P.O. Box 903, Baltimore, Md., 21203.