Slate has an interesting article mining a scholarly "metapaper": The Moviegoer - What social scientists and economists can tell us about our cinematic preferences. By Michael Agger.
"Here's how the authors summarize the process by which expensive bombs like The Adventures of Pluto Nash come into the world: '[W]hen costs are sunk progressively and information on a project's quality is revealed gradually, rational decision makers can carry projects to completion that realize enormous ex post losses.' Rational decision-making led to a $100 million film with Eddie Murphy running a nightclub on the moon in the year 2087. That's funny."
I assume that the same logic applies whenever a small group of decisionmakers get together and decide to do a project. Like, for example, the Iraq war.