But the ultimate hypocrisy is that they don’t really apply this same thinking to movies. Original movies like Moana, Zootopia, Luca, etc. are greenlit, but the idea of an original theme park ride is laughable to Bob Chapek.
I know @britain already touched on this, but generally speaking, the cost of having WDI do story development would be far more expensive, and not make the same return that having your studio produce something would net you. WDI's only option for producing an original story would be the equivalent of producing another Endgame level tent pole movie ($200M+), and not even the studios would take that gamble on an unknown story/franchise.
It also should be considered that, the studios SHOULD be far better at telling stories, because they've been at it far longer than Imagineering has.
The Non Descript Coaster Themed Like India or Whatever was a better return on investment than pretty much every domestic project since.
Yeah but this also betrays the darker reality of theme parks: Disney could make a lot of money if they just started building coasters like Universal and Sea World. Not going for the cheap win, is what sets Disney apart... right?