THE LOCAL CHAPTER of the International Animated Film Association will present American Apple Pie, a collection of classic American animation, Friday at 7:30 at the University of the District of Columbia. Included in the two-hour program will be Disney's 1930 short The Band Concert, as well as a clip from the "Sorcerer's Apprentice" sequence of Fantasia. Warner Bros. will be represented by the Bugs Bunny romp What's Opera, Doc?, and some seminal works of Tex Avery will be shown, including Little Red-Hot Riding Hood. The Oscar-winning Gerald McBoing Boing will serve as a transition to more contemporary animation examples, including John and Faith Hubley's Moonbird and Rembrandt Films' Munro. The show is free, and will be held in Building 41, Room A-3 of UDC's Van Ness Campus, Van Ness and Connecticut Avenue NW. Authentic animation "cels" (preliminary drawings) for cartoons ranging from Rocky and Bullwinkle to Charlotte's Web can be bought at the screening. Call 684-1050 for additional details.

If you are intrigued with Linda Hunt's sly performance in Silverado or just can't get enough of Mel Gibson in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, the Sidwell Cinema at The Sidwell Friends School is screening Peter Weir's breakthrough film, The Year of Living Dangerously, Friday through Sunday at 7:30 and 9:40. Hunt won an Oscar for her distinctive portrayal of diminutive photographer Billy Kwan, and the film solidified Gibson's position as an international box office star. Tickets are $3 each; phone 537-8178 for details.

The Biograph Theater is presenting the local theatrical premiere of Robert Altman's most recent film, Secret Honor, in a double bill with his sublimely confident 1982 picture Come Back to the 5 & Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean. The shows run through Monday. Produced independently and featuring Phillip Baker Hall's bizarre one-man interpretation of Richard Nixon's final hours in the White House, "Secret Honor" is among Altman's most curious and controversial films. For showtimes, call the Biograph at 333-2696.

Actress Geraldine Fitzgerald will be performing her one-woman show, "Streetsongs," at the Baird Auditorium of the National Museum of Natural History, Saturday at 8 and Sunday afternoon at 4:30. She began collecting dialogue and songs from London street singers (called "pearlies") and British and Irish rural pubs about 10 years ago, and has now gathered them into a show. Tickets are $12 for members of the Smithsonian Resident Associate Program and $15 for non-members. Call 357-3030.

The National Theater concludes its Summer Cinema program Monday at 7 with a screening of Istvan Szabo's 1981 Hungarian drama Mephisto, starring Klaus Maria Brandauer. The screening is free; for reservations call 783-3372 (they aren't necessary, but recommended).

It isn't too late to take advantage of the Roth Theater chain's children's matinees, which run Thursday through Saturday. Ten recent films geared for kiddies are circulating among nine Roth theaters in suburban Maryland and Virginia. Five dollars will buy you a punch card of 10 admissions; and the card also provides discounts at all Bowl America locations. The charge for an individual show is $1.50. For further information, call or visit any Roth theater, or call the main office at 587-8450.

Local filmmakers interested in being shown at the ADD ARTS '85 festival are invited to submit their work (16mm only, please) by Monday to District Curators Inc., Suite 700, 930 F Street NW. An honorarium will be given to those filmmakers whose work is shown. The festival is September 1. Call 783- 7898 (or leave a message at 783-0360) for more information.

According to the Washington-based Motion Picture Information Service, the area's 10 top- grossing pictures for the week ending July 11 were, in descending order, Back to the Future (a solid hit in its first week at 19 theaters); Cocoon (continuing on 17 screens in week three); Rambo: First Blood Part II (expanding from 19 to 20 screens in its seventh week); St. Elmo's Fire (holding nicely at 14 locations in week two); Pale Rider (staying at 21 theaters in its second week); The Goonies (dropping from 20 to 19 houses in week five); The Emerald Forest (debuting on 12 screens); Prizzi's Honor (moving from 13 to 12 locations in a full month of release); Red Sonja (at 14 theaters in its first week); and Fletch (dropping from 16 to 14 screens in week six).

True to industry predictions, "Back to the Future" helped the traditionally busy July 4 weekend business surge a full 16 per cent over the previous weekend (locally, the film accounted for nearly 27 per cent of the $1.5 million generated during the survey period, which breaks down to an incredible $21,000 for each of its 19 screens).

PAGES OF FILM HISTORY: Happy birthday this date to George McGovern, character actor Pat Hingle (who played Sally Field's father in "Norma Rae") and Leslie Rickert (the pink alien Neek in Joe Dante's "Explorers"). On this date in 1916, Adolph Zukor's Famous Players Film Company joined forces with Jesse L. Lasky's Feature Play Company to create the Famous Players-Lasky Corporation, which later evolved into Paramount Pictures. it was 24 years ago on this date that TWA became the first airline to feature an in-flight movie -- "By Love Possessed."

Diana Rigg, perhaps best known as Emma Peel on TV's "The Avengers," celebrates a birthday on Saturday.

Those celebrating birthdays on Sunday include Don Knotts, Robin Williams, Edward Herrmann and director Norman Jewison.

Eddie Cockrell is a freelance film consultant and teacher. His "Insights on Film" is heard Mondays at 5:30 p.m. on WGMS AM & FM.