While originally developing the CAD program Autocad – and setting the stage for many years in this field – Autodesk has since spread its wings over more areas of the graphical world, not the least including 3D graphics and animation, for instance for movies or games, with the products 3ds Max, Maya and Maya LT.
3ds Max is an animation and rendering tool that will make photorealistic scenes out of a CAD drawing.
Maya is a total package for creating, modelling, and rendering 3D animations and visual effekts for film and video. The LT edition is a low cost edition that still provides you with full professional features, especially designed for indie-gamemakers.
Additional products and services, like the Character Generator, will help you ease your work. There are various packages available that will save you money if you need several tools.
In general, the Autodesk products are for professionals and are developed to a high level with solid capabilities and various kinds of support for the creative workflow, also for groups of people collaborating on the projects.
Check out all their great products at the Autodesk Store.