It gets worse; when I said there was a formula, I MEAN that there's an actual code the fucks at Illumination follow closely to make sure that their movie is the both the bare minimum amount of effort they can put in to it's production while maximizing the amount of people it can be enjoyed by to ensure profits.
Case in point; The Lorax.
Now, I know that SING would probably work better for this example, as it's the most obvious example of the effort:profit ratio due to the subject matter of the film (Funny animals doing funny animal stuff while singing with a happy ending! Yay!), but Illumination's take on the Lorax is a special kind of evil that you don't often see now-a-days.
You probably already know why The Lorax is a bad film on its own already. They lobotomized its source material. There's little to no Moral Ambiguity. The Once-ler has a face. There is very clearly a villain in the story. The pacing's off. It's not even a true fucking musical like the original adaptation of the book that Dr. Suess oversaw. Pretty much every thing that was the work's bread and butter in the past is absent in the new film.
But did you know it actually might have surpassed the original adaptation at one point in its development?
It was going to be a musical at one point, and a Rock Opera musical at that. The Once-Ler was still going to have a face, but his arc was going to have a lot more work put into it. It might have even been paced correctly. The Once-Ler had a lot more musical numbers that were actually good, too. Once-Ler even gets a top-tier Villain song (Biggering), and if you listen, part of How Ba-a-a-ad Can I Be's lyrics are in there, so we might have gotten that INSTEAD of HBCIB.
And ALL of this great stuff was cut solely because someone at the top of the ladder thought not enough people would "get" the movie if they went down that route.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAvfgnbnGpchttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uZuYFbSdL-w