All businesses are “for-profit.” It’s really not that difficult. If your movie makes $400 million, and you make a sequel that makes $170 million less, you’re going to rethink your game plan.
Executives will reject or set aside a project if they believe that they can make more money from another. Of course, that assumes that the studio has more than one project to consider.
Unless you two are in the studio executive profession, I assume you are speculating as I am.
I worked for a major pharmaceutical headquarters prior to early retirement and I was a part of the IT team on several drug marketing projects. Over the years I was involved in maybe close to a dozen monster huge projects involving multi-million dollar gains. Those mega-projects were the stars of the show.
But....I was also involved in hundreds of minor projects. Small profit gain projects, but in reality, their accumulative return as a whole, was the bulk of the corporation's annual income. From mini-projects that required less than a week of work, to mid-size projects requiring more time....and various levels of minor projects in between.
Other corporations I worked for were also geared with the same platform. Never did I see corporate management turn their nose up to a project that would potentially result in small gain, unless all their teams were already locked in other projects.
Just like cinema, there's no guaranteed return, there were risks. I can't imagine studio corporations being the exception to how most other corporations operate in regards to collecting revenue. Nor can I imagine studio corporations are built as a singular team project. Like most corporations, I would imagine there are multiple teams working on various projects (feature films, straight-to-video, tv series, commercials, etc.).
My point to all this is I find it unlikely they are solely deciding for or against a given film project on the size of their estimated profit return. It was really the small projects in the corporations I worked for that kept the paychecks coming.