AEC Software's FastTrack Schedule Supports the Production of Animated Fantasy Epic 9

-- Starz Animation Toronto selects FastTrack Schedule for proactive project planning throughout the making of the hit movie --

STERLING, VA—Sep 30, 2009—AEC Software, developers of project management software, announced today that Starz Animation Toronto, Canada's leading digital animation studio, relied on FastTrack Schedule to develop top-level pre-production schedules and "what-if" scenarios during production of Focus Features' animated fantasy epic 9, the hit movie whose director is Shane Acker and whose producers include Tim Burton and Timur Bekmambetov.

"For the movie 9, we were given a compressed time schedule - faced with a lot to do in a very short period of time. There was no room for error on our part," said Terry Dale, Vice President of Operations for Starz Animation Toronto. "However, this was no problem with FastTrack Schedule. We were able to prepare for unanticipated changes, shift resources effectively in advance of any issues and meet our deadlines; that was particularly important in the final phases of production, when any mistake would have been potentially devastating to the entire project."

In an industry known for being creative and innovative, as well as intensely deadline-driven, Starz Animation Toronto uses FastTrack Schedule in the critical pre-planning stages of a computer-generated imagery (CGI) project, to ensure that the studio has the capacity to complete the work before making any commitments to prospective clients. As production on a project begins, the studio continues to rely on FastTrack Schedule's traditional project management capabilities of planning, tracking and reporting project goals to manage the team's deliverable dates.

With FastTrack Schedule, Starz Animation Toronto takes a proactive approach to its projects, a key differentiator that allows it to stay ahead of the scheduled plan. For each project, the studio inputs real-time information into a Gantt chart and then adds data to create "what-if" situations. This allows the team to visualize what will happen if it takes on another project, and how it can fit more work into the existing schedule without creating production bottlenecks.

"FastTrack Schedule is easy, quick, cost-effective and exactly what we need to be more accurate and confident in our scheduling decisions. The program provides a clear bird's-eye view of our ongoing projects and, most importantly, allows us to look ahead and predict possible scenarios in the future," Dale explained. "Additionally, we can export and print those possible scenario charts and project plans as colorful PDF presentations and share them with whoever needs to see exactly what is going on. By providing this new level of transparency, we are able to build a new level of trust with our clients that goes a long way."

"Were thrilled that FastTrack Schedule was a key scheduling tool for Starz Animation Toronto's stunning work on 9," said Ryan Kish, Vice President of Marketing for AEC Software. "As a leading digital animation studio, Starz's use of FastTrack Schedule demonstrates how using a simple, yet versatile, project management tool to manage the many complicated aspects of CGI animation production helps keep a project on schedule. In addition to a top-notch creative team and the right visual effects software, studios like Starz Animation Toronto get ahead with a proactive planning process, by quickly adjusting to shifting priorities, and by being flexible to customers' many requests. With FastTrack Schedule, Starz Animation Toronto is able to do just that."

AEC Software's FastTrack Schedule 9.2 is the leading cross-platform project management software. Easy to use and affordable for both the experienced and occasional project managers, FastTrack Schedule provides detailed project status reports that help teams plan, track, manage, and achieve project goals.