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January 13, 2014 11:48 am

Jewish Actress Scarlett Johansson to Become Face of Israel’s SodaStream

avatar by Joshua Levitt

Scarlett Johansson filming her first SodaStream commercial. Photo: SodaStream.

Scarlett Johansson filming her first SodaStream commercial. Photo: SodaStream.

Jewish actress Scarlett Johansson on Monday was named in a multi-year contract to become the first global brand ambassador for SodaStream International Ltd. the Israeli company that revolutionized the soda water business by creating a carbonation system for the home. Johansson’s first role for the company will be in an ad broadcast during Super Bowl XLVIII next month.

Last year, SodaStream became the first Israeli company to air an ad during the Super Bowl. In the ad, happy people using the device, by pressing down on the top to trigger the carbonation, somehow could explode glass bottles of traditional soda on pallets in trucks or warehouses, highlighting the efficiency of having a machine to make bubbles at home.

In Hollywood, where Jerusalem-born actress Natalie Portman, 32, has long been considered the most desired Jewish actress, Johansson, 29, is now taking that mantle, despite her last name.

Esquire Magazine gave Johansson the title of “Sexiest Woman Alive” last year, and in 2006. She was the first woman to be awarded the title twice.

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Her father, Karsten Johansson, a Danish architect, the son of Ejner Johansson, Danish screenwriter and director, married her mother, Melanie Sloan, a Jewish film producer who was born in Bronx, New York, to an Ashkenazi family who had emigrated from Minsk, Russia, according to WikiPedia.

In an Israeli TV interview, Johansson said that she identifies as Jewish and was brought up with basic observance of Shabbat and the Jewish holidays, according to the Jewish Chronicle.

On Monday, shares of SodaStream, whose U.S. operation is based in New Jersey, fell sharply after the company missed earnings forecasts.

“Despite achieving all-time record sales, we failed to deliver our profit targets and are disappointed in our fourth quarter performance,” SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum said, in a statement. “These preliminary results reflect a challenging holiday selling season in the U.S. and several factors, mostly from the second half of the quarter that negatively impacted our gross margin.”

SodaStream said net income for fiscal 2013 was $52.5 million, below its estimate of $65 million, on sales of $562 million, compared to a forecast of $567 million.

At 10:30 AM Tuesday, shares of SodaStream, trading on the NASDAQ as SODA, were down 20% at $39.75, valuing the company at $828 million.

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